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Jim Harbaugh must adapt as Urban Meyer retires

It is fair to say Urban Meyer has owned Michigan football for some time. It was somewhat expected when he announced he was walking away and nobody in Ann Arbor will shed a tear.

At first glance, it looks like Jim Harbaugh and Michigan football will now begin to do what Ohio State has done since 2001. Win. A lot. But is that the case?

The fact is, it does not matter who is or is not on the sidelines. If Jim Harbaugh does not adapt and improve the Wolverines it will be the same old, same old.

Urban Meyer, used gifted speedy receivers, running backs and tight ends to get and create space. It was a proven formula. One that Michigan football should mimic.

Running is fine. It is a good idea to take time off the clock while keeping the opposition’s offense off the field. Michigan needs to rely less on tight ends and more on speedy game changers on the outside.

To make it a point to get the best players in space and get them the ball should become the focus. Harbaugh has shown a willingness to change. He is going to have to continue to evolve for Michigan to become the gem of the Big Ten.

This is a golden opportunity for Michigan football to take the Big Ten conference lead. Newly named Buckeye coach Ryan Day has three games under his belt as a head coach. Even Ohio State has no idea what they have in a coach.

He coached three games with Urban Meyer’s players. That must be brought up. There is no telling how Day will recruit. There is no telling who will de-commit from Ohio State. There is probably some tension in Columbus over “what if’s.”

The time to pass Ohio State in recruiting is now. Michigan has an easy sell. A new and largely unproven coach,  versus a coach who is close to returning Michigan to the cream of the conference crop.

The best coaches see their teams strengths and weaknesses and adapt accordingly. They also change so their program can grow to full potential. That is now what must take place.

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It goes without saying THE Game is in Ann Arbor next November. This should be the moment Michigan puts the demons to rest. After all, to lose at home to a new coach may make the Michigan faithful uneasy. It would almost put the Michigan head coach on the hot seat.

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