The Stats & Numbers To Know Surrounding Jim Harbaugh's 5 Years In Ann Arbor
Much of the narrative surrounding Michigan Wolverines football coach Jim Harbaugh's five-year tenure in Ann Arbor has involved his failure to beat Ohio State, and the fact that the Maize and Blue have yet to win a Big Ten title with him at the helm.
While those two elements are discouraging, it's also important to note the impressive accomplishments the Wolverines have achieved since he arrived in December of 2014, and the way he revived a program that former head coach Brady Hoke had left in shambles.
Below are several of the most important stats, numbers and figures to know encompassing Harbaugh's five years on the job.
2 Straight recruiting classes in 2016 and 2017 that ranked No. 4 nationally, marking the first time the program had signed back-to-back top-four classes since Lloyd Carr inked the nation's No. 2 haul in 2004 and the No. 4 crop in 2005. Additionally, Harbaugh also reeled in the Big Ten's top class in 2019, which was the first time the Wolverines had done so since 2007.
3 10-win seasons during Harbaugh's first four years on the job (2015, 2016 and 2018). The Maize and Blue had not racked up at least three 10-plus win seasons in a four-year span since 1997-99, when they went 12-0 in 1997, 10-3 in 1998 and 10-2 in 1999. Fielding H. Yost (1901-23, 1925-26) is the only other Michigan coach to win 10 or more games at least three times in his first four years on the job, going 11-0 in 1901 and 1902, 11-0-1 in 1903 and 10-0 in 1904.
3 Different offensive coordinators in five years, with Tim Drevno leading the charge in 2015 and 2016 and then seemingly splitting duties with Pep Hamilton in 2017, before Hamilton took over in 2018 and then Josh Gattis this past season. Michigan has not finished higher than 50th nationally in yards per game in any of those five seasons.
4th Largest margin of victory ever for U-M against an Associated Press top-10 opponent (the AP Poll was introduced in 1936) when it destroyed No. 8 Notre Dame, 45-14, on Oct. 26, 2019. The only three AP top-10 triumphs that were bigger were a 49-0 beatdown of No. 8 USC in the 1948 Rose Bowl, a 41-3 annihilation of No. 5 Texas A&M in 1977 and a 34-0 blanking of No. 8 Minnesota in 1954.
4.2 Has been the average national finish of Michigan's defense with Harbaugh at the helm, with defensive coordinator Don Brown (and D.J. Durkin in 2015), deserving plenty of credit as well. U-M's defensive unit finished No. 4 in the country in 2015, No. 1 in 2016, No. 3 in 2017, No. 2 in 2018 and No. 11 this past year. Michigan has also picked up five shutouts in the past five years, including three in a row (against BYU, Maryland and Northwestern) in 2015.
10-14 Record against Associated Press top-25 opponents, which has been one of the main sources of criticism during Harbaugh's tenure. The record worsens to 2-11 against AP top-10 foes, with the only two victories occurring against No. 8 Wisconsin in 2016 and No. 8 Notre Dame in 2019.
11 Players selected in the 2017 NFL draft, which was a new school record (the old mark had been 10 in 1972 and 1974). The Maize and Blue have had 21 total players drafted under Harbaugh.
17 Points has been the average margin of defeat for U-M against Ohio State, with 29-point blowouts in 2015 and 2019 and a 23-point setback in 2018 being the most discouraging losses. Michigan took Ohio State to double-overtime in 2016 before falling by three (30-27) and came close to knocking off the Buckeyes again in 2017 (trailed by four points and possessed the ball with just 2:43 to go), but ultimately holds an 0-5 record against them during Harbaugh's tenure.
21-7 Was the final score of the 2018 Michigan/Michigan State game, giving the Wolverines their first double-digit win in East Lansing since 1997 (23-7). U-M has also won consecutive games (2016 and 2018) on the Spartans' home field for the first time since Carr's clubs did so in 2005 and 2007. Michigan's 44-10 beatdown of MSU this past season was also the program's biggest margin of victory in the rivalry since 2002, when it won 49-3.
30-5 Home record with Harbaugh at the helm, which equates out to an 85.7 winning percentage. The only five losses in Ann Arbor have come at the hands of Michigan State in 2015 and 2017, and Ohio State in 2015, 2017 and 2019. In comparison, U-M lost five home games in Hoke's final two years on the job (2013 and 2014), with the club going just 9-5 (a 64.2 winning percentage) in Ann Arbor during those two years.
47-18 Is Harbaugh's overall record at Michigan (a 72.3 winning percentage). His 47 victories are already the seventh most in school history among the 20 coaches U-M has ever had.
3,017 Passing yards for quarterback Jake Rudock in 2015, which were the second most in a season in school history (John Navarre's 3,331 yards in 2003 are the most). Rudock arrived in Ann Arbor as a fifth-year senior in 2015, after departing Iowa and the likely backup role he had been demoted to with the Hawkeyes.
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