Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Stanford & Harbaugh: The day after
By ESPN.com staff
Is it possible that the best news for Stanford this week won't be the 40-12 win over Virginia Tech in the Discover Orange Bowl?
This from the well-sourced Michael Rosenberg is interesting: Harbaugh unlikely to go to Michigan:
Harbaugh plans to decide this week whether he wants to take a job in the NFL. If he stays in college coaching, he has decided he will stay at Stanford, where he has built a potential powerhouse. It would take an extreme change of heart for Harbaugh to end up in Ann Arbor, according to the person, who did not want to be identified because Rich Rodriguez is still U-M’s coach.
The San Francisco 49ers are making a strong push to hire Harbaugh. New Denver Broncos executive John Elway attended the Orange Bowl on Monday — as an honorary captain for Stanford, his alma mater — and ESPN has reported Elway would like Harbaugh to coach his team. But Harbaugh also could stay at Stanford — a possibility that seemed remote just a few days ago.
Of course, as you all saw, Harbaugh said nothing of note after the game on what his next move is, though he was often entertaining while doing so.
So it's Stanford vs. the NFL.
While many folks -- me included -- have long thought that the ultra-competitive Harbaugh would only be satisfied by testing himself on the highest level, the available jobs might not be the perfect landing he envisioned, particularly the San Francisco 49ers, which have notoriously bad ownership.
The odds aren't great that Harbaugh returns. But it's not ridiculous to feel they are better today than last week. So Stanford fans: There is hope.
As for the football part of football, this quote from Virginia Tech running back Darren Evans sums things up:
“I thought coming into the game that we would be the more physical team, because that’s just the way that we play,” Evans said. “But they showed us up. The whole game, from start to finish, they were in our tails. It’s a tough one to swallow. It’s kind of like an arm wrestling match. You face up with somebody, and either you’re going to bring their arm down, or they’re going to bring yours down. They definitely brought it to us.”