Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has dominated the offseason conversation, from his tweets and his satellite camps to his quick turnaround at Michigan and his refusal to share his starting quarterback choice.
Yet it seems he’s not always No. 1. Yahoo‘s Pat Forde ranked Harbaugh No. 2 on his list of the Top 25 most intriguing coaches for this season. Harbaugh was joined by fellow Big Ten coaches Urban Meyer and Lovie Smith.
But which coach did Forde rank higher than Harbaugh? Houston’s Tom Herman, who went 13-1 in his first season with the Cougars and has Houston as a possible Group of Five College Football Playoff contender — and will likely be a candidate for bigger jobs after this season.
As for Harbaugh, Forde wrote:
Who had it better than Jim this offseason? Nobody. No coach commanded more January-August headlines than Harbaugh, who seemingly was everywhere doing everything and saying anything. Now it’s time to back it up on the field. Harbaugh had an excellent debut season at his alma mater, elevating a 5-7 team to 10-3. Now he appears primed for a run at Michigan’s first Big Ten title since 2004 – which is an astounding stat – and a potential corresponding playoff berth.
When it came to Illinois’ Smith, ranked 14th, Forde said the former NFL coach has brought in much-needed excitement to a program looking for its first winning season since going 7-6 in 2011.
Ohio State coach Meyer is only 16th, and Forde mentions how it may be surprising he’s so low on the list. Still, even though Ohio State lost a ton of players, Forde said the Buckeyes have a bunch of young, talented players and could again be a national championship contender.