When I first heard about this, I thought, “No way. This has to be some kind of internet meme or rumor started by someone immediately following the NCAA ruling against Spring Team Practices in other states or remote locales in the USA.
Then I remembered: Harbaugh.
He won’t be outworked, outthought, or out foxed. He’s dedicated to one thing: Winning Football. He will do whatever it takes to achieve his goal.
So, it’s official. Michigan will be heading to Rome, Italy for a week of remote practice. While I get this isn’t a recruiting tool, in a way, it IS a recruiting tool for anyone looking at the top 10 or 15 universities and wondering, “What else am I gonna’ get (Iegally) from this University besides an education, an opportunity to play for a national title, and a chance to play on Sunday?” If they are smart recruits, they’re going to recognize that Harbaugh is going to give you a chance to see more than you would any place else.
I’m sure, initially, that other schools will scoff at this and claim it’s gimmicky. And without question, it is. But ask any coach that does something like this with a team and they will tell you that the bonding experience is huge. And that’s what building and motivating a team is all about.
Word of these types of “adventures” will spread through the recruiting network and kids that are on the fence between Michigan and anyone else will hear about these “Once in a lifetime experiences” and they will say, “Hey, I want that!”
Yes, Harbaugh is searching for an edge wherever he can find it and the edge you find is razor thin in today’s college game. Everyone is good and in order to set yourself apart from the field, well, you have to do things a little different sometimes.
Ciao Bella! Andare Blu!