(97.1 The Ticket) Jim Harbaugh got a supermodel’s welcome at Michigan, and some fans still hold him in that regard.
But when former Wolverines wide receiver Amani Toomer looks at Harbaugh’s track record over his first three seasons, particularly his 1-5 mark versus Ohio State and Michigan State, he sees something far less attractive.
“To me, that’s not a supermodel, that’s Paris Hilton. That’s somebody who’s given us nothing — but, ‘Oh, we’re going to Rome. Oh, we wear Michael Jordan shoes.’ I don’t care! I want to beat Michigan State, I want to beat Ohio State. That’s the passion that I have for the program,” Toomer told the Jamie and Stoney Show on 97.1 The Ticket.
It’s the second time this month Toomer has spoken out about Harbaugh’s tenure in Ann Arbor. Last Monday he lamented the fact that Michigan is “mired in mediocrity and accepting it.”
Toomer, who went 34-12-3 over his career as a Wolverine, believes the program deserves better than what Harbaugh has delivered, especially for the price of about $9 million per year.
“I’m a frustrated fan. I think that what Michigan signed up for was a Nick Saban, an Urban Meyer,” Toomer said. “We signed up for somebody who was going to come in and change the culture. I mean, he had a great first year. The first two years I was excited, but last year he had his best team and they lose to Ohio State? That was a heartbreaker.”
Still, Toomer turned the page, believing 2017 would be better.
“And this year they lose to Ohio State embarrassingly. They lose to Michigan State, another embarrassment. I just think that we deserve better than this,” Toomer said. “He’s getting paid as one of the great coaches in college football that can make chicken soup out of chicken parts, and he’s just not doing that.
“If you’re a Michigan fan and you’re telling me you’re happy about the way the program is, then I don’t know what to tell you.”
Toomer isn’t of the mind that Michigan should fire Harbaugh. He believes he’s a good coach. But he doesn’t understand the high approval rating for a guy who continues to fail against his rivals.
“The fact that we’re getting beat by Ohio State three times, how comes nobody’s saying anything about that? … He’s only beat Michigan State once. How do you sit there and say that’s okay? How? Explain to me that,” Toomer said.
Toomer went 4-3-1 against the Spartans and the Buckeyes during his Michigan career. His overall record was nothing to write home about, including three consecutive four-loss seasons, but at least someone was held accountable, he said.
“My coach got fired my senior year, Gary Moeller got fired for that. I know what it means to have a coach be mediocre and have a team be mediocre and then your coach gets fired,” Toomer said.
Meanwhile, Harbaugh seems to skating by on his name.
“I’m just upset that people aren’t holding his feet to the fire more because his name is Harbaugh,” said Toomer. “If his name was Hoke, if his name was Rich Rod, if his name was Gary Moeller, they would be upset. And we weren’t as bad as he is!”
As to why there hasn’t been more pushback among the fan base, particularly former players, Toomer said he thinks people are hesitant to speak out.
“I’ve gotten texts from some of my friends who are like, ‘At least you said something.’ Look, we don’t hate Harbaugh,” he said. “That’s not the point of this. The point is, I just want the team to be better. I’m not trying to tear apart the program, I love the program. I risked my life on the field for Michigan. I bleed blue. But for people to be okay with this is bothersome to me.
“I think Michigan is better than this. If you don’t, that’s fine; if you’re happy with it, great. I’m not.”