Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh and quarterback Cade McNamara celebrate a touchdown against Iowa during the first half of the Big Ten championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021.

Syndication Detroit Free Press

Jim Harbaugh on Michigan’s two-QB system: ‘It’s really biblical’

Jim Harbaugh is doing things by the book at Michigan.

In granting the Wolverines’ top two quarterbacks each a start to begin the regular season, Harbaugh delayed naming a No. 1 quarterback after considering biblical guidance.

Cade McNamara will start for No. 8 Michigan against Colorado State on Saturday. Sophomore J.J. McCarthy gets the nod Sept. 10 against Hawaii.

Harbaugh said both quarterbacks will play in each game.

“No person, that’s biblical, no person knows what the future holds,” Harbaugh said Monday. “It’s a process and it’s going to be based on performance, but we’re not going to withhold any good thing. Both have been tremendous quarterbacks. We think that both are capable of leading our team to a championship.”

McNamara was the starter for the Wolverines in 2021 on the way to Michigan’s outright conference championship and a spot in the College Football Playoff. Harbaugh said McNamara was “arguably one of the most improved players on the team” following a season in which he amassed 2,576 passing yards, 15 touchdowns and six interceptions.

McCarthy was a top-25 overall recruit but an injured throwing shoulder limited his availability this spring. He came off the bench to play in 11 games in 2021.

The quarterbacks made a decision difficult on the Wolverines’ coaching staff, Harbaugh said, adding he believes both are ready to lead the team to a championship if their number is called.

“Some people have asked, ‘How did you come to that decision? Was it based on some kind of NFL model?’” Harbaugh said. “No, it’s really based biblical. Solomon, he was known to be a pretty wise person.”

–Field Level Media

Oct 12, 2019; Champaign, IL, USA; A Michigan Wolverines helmet sits on the back of the bench during the second half of the game against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Michael Allio-USA TODAY Sports

Former Michigan coach Gary Moeller dies at 81

Gary Moeller, a longtime football coach best known for succeeding Bo Schembechler at Michigan, died on Monday.

Moeller was 81. A cause of death was not specified.

Among his 23 years associated with the Wolverines, Moeller spent five seasons (1990-94) as their head coach. He was also the head coach at Illinois (1977-79) and the NFL’s Detroit Lions (2000).

Moeller’s Michigan teams went 44-13-3 in his five-year head coaching stint, including three Big Ten Championships and a 4-1 record in bowl games. He led Michigan to a 9-0-3 record and a Rose Bowl victory in 1992.

From 1990 through 1992, the Wolverines won 19 straight conference games, setting a Big Ten record.

“The football world lost a great man in Gary Moeller,” current Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said in a statement. “Coach Moeller cared for his players and his teams and was devoted to the University of Michigan. He gave a lot to the game of football, excelling as both an offensive and defensive coordinator and head coach in the college and NFL ranks. We have lost a wonderful family man.”

Harbaugh overlapped with Moeller from 1982-86, when Harbaugh played quarterback and Moeller was the defensive coordinator on Schembechler’s staff. Moeller then served as the Wolverines’ offensive coordinator from 1987-89 and took over the top job when Schembechler retired from coaching.

Moeller resigned as head coach in May 1995 after he was arrested for disorderly conduct at a restaurant in Michigan. After two seasons as the Cincinnati Bengals’ tight ends coach, he coached the Lions’ linebackers until being promoted to interim head coach during the 2000 season when Bobby Ross resigned mid-year.

Moeller’s Lions went 4-3 during his interim stint.

–Field Level Media

Co-host Josh Landon speaks with former University of Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr during 2019 Michigan Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony at MotorCity Casino Hotel, Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019.

100519 Halloffame Amb 003

QB CJ Carr, grandson of Lloyd Carr, picks Notre Dame over Michigan

Notre Dame landed a commitment from a five-star quarterback in the Class of 2024 — and it also allowed the Fighting Irish to score a win over one of their biggest rivals.

CJ Carr, the grandson of longtime Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr, committed to Notre Dame Thursday.

Carr also listed Michigan, Michigan State, Georgia, LSU and Wisconsin as finalists.

He plays at Saline High School in Saline, Michigan, outside Ann Arbor, but he told ESPN that South Bend always left him impressed.

“I’ve been telling my family I’m going to Notre Dame since this last spring,” Carr said, per ESPN.

Carr even said his father asked him to hold off a little longer to consider his other options.

“After the last camp at Notre Dame, we were supposed to go down south and I was like, ‘Dad, I know where I want to go,’ and he let me commit,” Carr said.

Listed at 6-foot-2 1/2, 195 pounds, Carr is the No. 20 overall prospect and the fifth-best quarterback in the Class of 2024, per the 247Sports composite.

Lloyd Carr coached the Wolverines from 1995-2007. He led Michigan to a national title in 1997 and he retired with a 122-40 record with victories in the Rose, Citrus and Orange Bowls.

The elder Carr’s Michigan teams went 5-4 against Notre Dame.

–Field Level Media

Mar 4, 2022; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Michigan defensive lineman David Ojabo (DL36) talks to the media during the 2022 NFL Combine.  Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Michigan’s David Ojabo tore Achilles at pro day

Michigan edge rusher David Ojabo sustained a torn Achilles during his pro day workout, multiple media outlets reported Saturday.

Per ESPN, Ojabo is expected to return to play in approximately six months. A September return means he would miss the first few weeks of the regular season.

Ojabo, who is regarded as a potential first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, clutched his leg during a pass-rush drill and needed assistance to exit the field in Ann Arbor, Mich.

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound junior took to Twitter to deliver a message to his fans.

“God got me!! ima be back stronger than ever (heart emoji) all part of my story,” he wrote.

Ojabo registered 11 sacks and five forced fumbles this season as the Wolverines advanced to the College Football Playoff.

Raised in Aberdeen, Scotland, Ojabo didn’t start playing football until his junior year of high school after moving to the United States.

He did not appear in any games for Michigan as a freshman in 2019 and registered just one tackle in six games in 2020.

–Field Level Media

Tyler Nielsen trips up Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson in a game played Nov. 5, 2011 in Iowa City.

Iowbrd 11 06 2011 Pc 1 B005 2011 11 05 Img Iow 1106 Ia Vs Mich 1 1 Aoieg4p Img Iow 1106 Ia Vs Mich 1 1 Aoieg4p

Report: Ex-Michigan QB Denard Robinson to join Jim Harbaugh’s staff

Former Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson is returning to serve on coach Jim Harbaugh’s staff, 247Sports reported Wednesday.

The outlet said Robinson, 31, will be the football program’s assistant director of player personnel.

Robinson quarterbacked Michigan from 2009 to 2012. In 2010, he placed sixth in the Heisman Trophy voting after completing 62.5 percent of his passes for 2,570 yards and 18 touchdowns. He finished his college career throwing for 6,250 yards and 49 TDs.

Robinson was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the fifth round of the 2013 NFL Draft. He played four seasons as a running back in Jacksonville before joining the Atlanta Legends of the Alliance of American Football league in 2018.

After the league folded in 2019, Robinson joined the Jacksonville University coaching staff as an offensive analyst. He became the Jaguars’ offensive quality control coach in 2020, and later, under then-Jags coach Urban Meyer, Robinson became a college scouting assistant in the team’s front office.

–Field Level Media

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh watched his team warm up before the Orange Bowl against Georgia on Friday, Dec. 31, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Capital One Orange Bowl

Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh: Done chasing NFL jobs

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said he no longer is interested in seeking employment in the NFL.

Following an interview with the Minnesota Vikings, Harbaugh told the Detroit Free Press that the idea of winning the Super Bowl spurred his interest in the NFL. He was unsuccessful in his lone appearance in the big game as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII on Feb. 3, 2013.

“Sure, the Super Bowl is the greatest prize in our sport,” Harbaugh told the newspaper. “But winning a national championship, that’s pretty darn great. Let’s do that.

“There was a pull to the NFL because I got that close to the Super Bowl, but this was the time (to try and return). And this is the last time. Now let’s go chase college football’s greatest prize.”

Harbaugh, 58, met with the Vikings this week, however the club reportedly is expected to hire Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell following Super Bowl LVI.

“There was a tugging at me that I was once that close to a Super Bowl and I didn’t get it,” Harbaugh told the newspaper. “Some NFL jobs came open. I was contacted by the Vikings. For better or for worse, it was something I wanted to explore. I went in thinking, ‘I’m gonna have 100 percent conviction on this, and if they (the Vikings) have 100 percent conviction on this, then it’s something I’m gonna do.’”

New Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah was in the research and development department with the San Francisco 49ers in 2013 and 2014 when Harbaugh was the team’s head coach. Harbaugh was 44-19-1 with the 49ers with three NFC Championship game appearances. His Super Bowl loss was to the Baltimore Ravens, coached by his older brother, John.

Harbaugh guided the Wolverines to the Big Ten championship and College Football Playoff in 2021. They lost to eventual champion Georgia in the semifinals.

He owns a 61-24 record during his seven seasons at Michigan, his alma mater.

–Field Level Media

Jim Harbaugh

Report: Jim Harbaugh won’t return to NFL, staying at Michigan

Jim Harbaugh’s flirtation with the NFL apparently is over.

ESPN reported Wednesday that Harbaugh informed Michigan he will return to the school as head coach instead of jumping to the NFL. He interviewed with the Minnesota Vikings earlier in the day — his second interview with the club.

Harbaugh told Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel that he intends to stay at his alma mater as long as the school wants him, per the report.

The Vikings now are expected to turn their focus to three other candidates: Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell and New York Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham.

Harbaugh guided the Wolverines to the Big Ten championship and College Football Playoff in 2021. They lost to eventual champion Georgia in the semifinals.

ESPN reported over the weekend that Harbaugh “conveyed legitimate interest” in the Vikings and added that team management came away from the first interview “feeling Harbaugh is ready to return to the NFL.”

The Vikings’ head-coaching job is available after the team fired Mike Zimmer on Jan. 10 following an 8-9 season.

Zimmer, 65, posted a 72-56-1 record during his eight seasons at the helm in Minnesota, although the club finished under .500 in each of the past two seasons.

Harbaugh, 58, owns a 61-24 record during his seven seasons at Michigan. That success followed a 44-19-1 run during his stint with the San Francisco 49ers (2011-14). He guided the 49ers to three straight NFC Championship Games and an appearance in Super Bowl XLVII.

–Field Level Media

Nov 27, 2021; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (97) celebrates his sad of Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback C.J. Stroud (not pictured) with defensive end Mike Morris (90) in the second half in the second half at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

CFP rankings: Michigan takes over No. 2 after beating Ohio State

Michigan rose three spots to No. 2 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings released Tuesday night, moving into position for its first appearance in the four-team playoff.

The Wolverines (11-1) rose after beating Ohio State 42-27 Saturday, which prompted the Buckeyes to fall five spots to No. 7 this week. It was Michigan’s first win over its archrival since 2011, and moves the Wolverines into the Big Ten Championship game for the first time, facing West Division champion Iowa on Saturday night in Indianapolis.

Michigan is a 10.5-point favorite to win the Big Ten title fight, which would surely boost the Big Blue into its first College Football Playoff field since the playoffs were instituted in the 2014 season. Michigan last won the national championship in 1997, sharing the title with Nebraska.

Georgia remained No. 1 and Alabama stayed at No. 3 despite struggling to put away Auburn in a four-overtime Iron Bowl.

Cincinnati — with Georgia, one of the only two undefeated teams remaining in the country — held at No. 4 in its bid to become the first team from outside the Power Five conferences to reach the playoff.

Oklahoma State rose two spots to No. 5 by beating rival Oklahoma 37-33. The Cowboys will face Baylor in the Big 12 Championship Game with a shot at finishing as a 12-1 conference champion, providing a good argument for its playoff hopes.

Oklahoma State leapfrogged No. 6 Notre Dame, which stayed pat as it deals with the aftermath of coach Brian Kelly leaving the Fighting Irish program this week to accept the same job at LSU.

Behind Ohio State, Ole Miss passed Baylor to become No. 8, relegating the Bears to No. 9. Oregon rounds out the top 10.

No. 23 Kentucky (8-4) and No. 24 Louisiana (11-1) entered the rankings. Wisconsin fell all the way from No. 14 to out of the Top 25 following its loss to Minnesota. UTSA also dropped out of the Top 25, as well, after its first loss of the season to North Texas.

Below is the complete Top 25:

1. Georgia
2. Michigan
3. Alabama
4. Cincinnati
5. Oklahoma State
6. Notre Dame
7. Ohio State
8. Ole Miss
9. Baylor
10. Oregon
11. Michigan State
12. BYU
13. Iowa
14. Oklahoma
15. Pitt
16. Wake Forest
17. Utah
18. North Carolina State
19. San Diego State
20. Clemson
21. Houston
22. Arkansas
23. Kentucky
24. Louisiana
25. Texas A&M

–Field Level Media

Nov 13, 2021; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions quarterback Sean Clifford (14) runs with the ball during the first quarter against the Michigan Wolverines at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

Cade McNamara throws 3 TDs as No. 6 Michigan beats Penn State, 21-17

Cade McNamara threw three touchdown passes, including a go-ahead 47-yard strike to Erick All, and No. 6 Michigan edged Penn State 21-17 on Saturday in State College, Pa.

McNamara threw for 217 yards, while Roman Wilson caught two of his touchdown passes. Hassan Haskins carried 31 times for 156 yards and also made five receptions for 45 yards for the Wolverines (9-1, 6-1 Big Ten).

Sean Clifford passes for 205 yards and a touchdown for the Nittany Lions (6-4, 3-4), who have lost four of their past five games. Jahan Dotson caught nine passes for 61 yards. Michigan sacked Clifford seven times.

The Wolverines clung to a 7-6 advantage at the break.

Penn State scored on its first possession as Jordan Stout kicked a 42-yard field goal. The drive was extended by a fake punt, and the Nittany Lions eventually reached Michigan’s 15-yard line but Clifford was sacked on third down, pushing the line of scrimmage back nine yards.

Penn State went all the way to the Wolverines’ 2-yard line on its next possession but didn’t score. The Nittany Lions tried a fake field goal but Stout was tackled for a loss.

The Wolverines took the lead with a 90-yard drive midway through the second quarter. McNamara completed four passes of 13 or more yards during that drive, including a 21-yard strike to Wilson for the touchdown.

Stout blasted a 52-yard field goal late in the half to cut Michigan’s lead to one point.

The Wolverines opened the second half with a 75-yard scoring drive. McNamara, who connected with Cornelius Johnson on a 25-yard pass play during the possession, hit Wilson from the 1-yard-line for the touchdown.

Penn State tied it at 14 with 7:35 remaining. Clifford connected with Dotson three times before finding Tyler Warren from the 2-yard-line for the touchdown. Clifford then passed to Dotson for the 2-point conversion.

Derrick Tangelo forced a McNamara fumble, leading to Stout’s 31-yard field goal with 5:55 left.

Michigan scored on its next possession. After five rushing plays by Haskins, McNamara found All on a crossing route. He raced down the right sideline to put Michigan back on top 21-17 with 3:29 remaining.

–Field Level Media

Michigan Wolverines defensive end Aidan Hutchinson (97) and linebacker David Ojabo (55) force a fumble by Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Donaven McCulley (0) during first half action Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021 at Michigan Stadium.

Mich Ind

Hassan Haskins’ career day lifts No. 7 Michigan over Indiana

Hassan Haskins rushed for a career-high 168 yards and a touchdown and tight end Luke Schoonmaker caught two TD passes, lifting No. 7 Michigan to a 29-7 win over Indiana in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Haskins took on the bulk of the run game after sophomore running back Blake Corum suffered an injury in the first quarter and did not return.

Even without Corum, Michigan (8-1, 5-1 Big Ten) rolled up 188 rushing yards and 411 yards of total offense to avenge a 38-21 loss at Indiana last season. Quarterback Cade McNamara passed for 168 yards and two TDs. McNamara connected on a 50-yard pass to Cornelius Johnson early in the fourth quarter, then an 8-yard TD pass to Schoonmaker to put the Wolverines up 29-7.

Indiana (2-7, 0-6 Big Ten) dropped its fifth straight and is still seeking its first conference win. Freshman quarterback Donaven McCulley, making his second career start, finished with 88 yards passing and 37 yards rushing. Michigan’s defense harassed McCulley for much of the night, recording two sacks and nine pressures.

Haskins rushed for 117 yards in the first half, helping Michigan build a 17-7 halftime lead.

After a 34-yard Jake Moody field goal put Michigan up 3-0 to end the first quarter, the Wolverines took advantage of a short field off a turnover to score their first TD. Linebacker David Ojabo came up with a strip sack of McCulley, which Michigan recovered at Indiana’s 25-yard line. Four plays later, Haskins plunged in on a 2-yard TD run, putting the Wolverines up 10-0.

Indiana answered with a 10-play, 75-yard TD drive, sparked by the arm and legs of McCulley. A 24-yard run by McCulley got Indiana down to the Michigan 2, and Chris Childers scored on a 1-yard TD run, cutting Michigan’s lead to 10-7.

But Michigan responded with a quick four-play, 75-yard TD drive, sparked by a 62-yard run from Haskins. McNamara capped the drive with a 12-yard TD pass to Schoonmaker, putting Michigan up 17-7 with 6:28 left in the second quarter.

Indiana lost starting running back Stephen Carr in the first quarter to a leg injury.

–Field Level Media