OK, so that’s probably something you didn’t expect … well … anyone to say. But, there is a reason why we have a “Blog Category” called Dan’s Stupidity. And, since we are getting close to College Football season here in America … I figured, it’s a great time to bring up this ramble.
Those of you who don’t know … Jim Harbaugh is the head coach of the University of Michigan football team. He has a long and storied football career. He actually was a quarterback for the University of Michigan back in the 80’s, finishing third for the Heisman his senior year. He went on to play in the NFL with the Bears, Colts, Chargers, Panthers, and technically with the Lions. He coached for Stanford and the San Francisco 49ers, before being unceremoniously let go by the 49’ers.
But, now, he’s the new kid in town.
HARDLINE CURLING – The New Kid in Town
The first time I remember noticing the Ice Pad … they had come out with a funny ad about dominating your opponent … which just happened to come out the same time as the movie 50 Shades of Grey. Now, I won’t make any more jokes about that … It was a different ad that you didn’t expect, but it made a quick impression.
— Hardline Curling (@HardlineCurling) August 24, 2015
And, no, “quick impression” wasn’t a 50 Shades of Grey reference. And, yes, I went through a good year of tweets to find that photo. You’re welcome, America.
JIM HARBAUGH – Making an Impression
Jim Harbaugh’s showing up everywhere. WWE, Rap VIdeos, Showcasing his Jumpman-branded khakis.
With new deal, Nike will make Jim Harbaugh’s khakis pic.twitter.com/1mfrs2hdnE
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) August 2, 2016
He’s trying to appeal to potential five-star recruits. They can’t go to Ohio State, Alabama, or the other traditional powerhouses. You have to be different. As a player, would you want to be yelled at by lame coaches like Urban Meyer and Nick Saban. You have to stand out from the competition.
HARDLINE CURLING – Standing out from the Competition
One way that Hardline Curling stood out from the competition, it recruited (aka sponsored, but recruited sounds better for the context of the story), some of curling’s best. In 2014, Hardline sponsored Team McEwen, Team Carruthers and Team Shuster. Let me throw some more names at you … Team Gushue, Team Carey, Team Tirinzoni, Team Laycock, Team McCarville. There are probably many I’m missing, but its 10:30pm at night and I’m tired. It’s always an easier to recruit the average curler to your brand when you can drop some big names.
JIM HARBAUGH – Dropping Big Names
Photo from mlive.com.
This year, the University of Michigan held their “Signing of the Stars” on February 3rd. This event was where The Victors announced their those recruits who signed letters of intent. But, not only that, they invited some pretty big names to this event. Harbaugh definitely went big here.
• Randy Sklar (Michigan alum/comedian)
• Tom Brady (football alum/NFL quarterback)
• Derek Jeter (former MLB shortstop)
• Jim Leyland (former MLB manager)
• Migos (musicians)
• Mayer Hawthorne (musician)
• Ric Flair (pro wrestling hall of famer)
• Derek Holland (MLB pitcher)
• Mike Shanahan (former NFL head coach)
• Denard Robinson (football alum/NFL running back)
• Jon Jansen (football alum/analyst)
• Brad Keselowski (NASCAR driver)
• Lou Holtz (football analyst)
• Jack Kennedy (football alum/musician)
• Desmond Howard (football alum/analyst)
• Todd McShay (football analyst)
• Jessica Szohr (actress)
• Josh Gracin (musician)
And, just because Ric Flair was mentioned … I have to end this section with WOOOOOOO!!!!!!
HARDLINE CURLING – The Sweeping Controversy and the Competition
OK, so this has been talked about and written to death. The only reason I’m bringing it up, is because its part of the overall story … plus, I need a segue. But, for those who don’t know … check out this clip from Colbert’s The Late Show.
PS – not sure if you caught Steve Laycock’s clip. Yup, if you’re paying attention at home … he’s on Team Hardline.
JIM HARBAUGH – The Controversy and the Competition
Let’s talk satellite camps. Colleges aren’t allowed to host recruiting camps outside a 50-mile radius of their campus. But, if a college coach is invited to another institutions camp – that’s totally fine. However, if your school is a member of the ACC or SEC conference … your own internal rules say you’re not allowed to step outside that 50-mile boundary – no matter what.
This gives Jim Harbaugh, who coaches in the Big Ten Conference, the opportunity to invade enemy territory. The south has a great “market share” of football talent … and ACC and SEC teams want to be protective of those players. Nobody wants Jim Harbaugh (or any other coaches) penetrating the market.
So, why is Jim Harbaugh the face of satellite camps. During recruiting, he was scheduled to visit 39 satellite camps in 22 states, American Samoa and Australia. I’m pretty sure, he’d be poised to be a better candidate for the US Presidency … oh wait … Phil doesn’t like it when I bring up politics.
And, there is a lot of back and forth. Alabama’s Nick Saban made comments about potential NCAA rule violations. Harbaugh responded, saying Saban’s comments were hypocritical coming from an institution that just had their own violations.
It’s somewhat funny when you look at simple comparisons between sports, and see eerie similarities. And, being a fan of curling at the University of MIchigan, this happened to jump out at me.