Harbaugh Accuses Ryan Day of Infraction. Day's Response? Put a Sock in It.

Harbaugh shakes with Nick Saban after Citrus Bowl. Will he and Ryan Day even manage a Covid-safe elbow bump this fall?

Herb Gould

 As if we didn’t need one more reason to root for a very-unlikely-to-happen college football season. . . Jim Harbaugh reportedly got in Ryan Day’s face the other day during a weekly Big Ten coaches’ conference call.

Michigan’s free spirit accused the Ohio State prodigy of a rules violation, saying an assistant coach was working with players before NCAA rules allowed, according to the bucknuts.com website. Harbaugh was referencing a photo that showed assistant Al Worthington working with linebackers before Friday’s official start date.

``How about I worry about my team and you worry about yours?’’ Day shot back, Bucknuts reported. At a team meeting later that day, the website said, Day told his players that the Wolverines better hope for a mercy rule this season because the Buckeyes were ``going to hang 100 on them.’’ ESPN.com confirmed the report.

On the one hand, conventional wisdom says that a coach who has lost five straight to his arch-rival shouldn’t stir the pot. Harbaugh’s 0-5 is the latest portion of a misery that has seen Michigan lose a boggling 15 of 16 to Ohio State, including the last eight in a row.

On the other hand, let’s give Harbaugh credit for being upfront, rather than taking the devious route of quietly lodging a complaint with the NCAA or the Big Ten.

Conventional wisdom, we all know, is not Harbaugh’s strong suit. Which is one of many reasons people either love him or hate him.

And here’s the other thing: Given the Hatfield-and-McCoy-like history of the Michigan-Ohio State rivalry, is it even possible to do anything that would fan the flames any hotter?

On a positive note, if this pandemically-endangered college football season does happen, we won’t have to wait until Thanksgiving for the Big Game: Covid-19 permitting, Michigan and Ohio State will meet at the Horseshoe on Oct. 24.