Not only are Jim Harbaugh and the Michigan Wolverines beating Ryan Day and the Ohio State Buckeyes on the field (42-27 in 2021 and that is all that matters), but they are also beating them in another key area.
As pointed out by Ohio State columnist Meredith Hein of Land Grant Holy Land from SB Nation, the Harbaugh and the Wolverines are leading the way when it comes to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Though Harbaugh has had no shortage of attention-seeking moments (a sleepover at a recruit’s house, climbing a tree, and doing pushups with a walrus are three examples that come readily to mind), his partnership with Kaepernick could hardly be counted in this category. Harbaugh has always been a progressive coach, and his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion has played a prominent role in his coaching philosophy through the years.
Case in point: Just last month, Harbaugh hired Milan (Mimi) Bolden-Morris as a graduate assistant. With the hire, the former Boston College/Georgetown basketball player became the first woman to coach in a Power Five conference.
Hein went on to point out that though Michigan has had their “fair share of controversies,” they have “made waves” when it comes to “diversity, equity, and inclusion.”
The University of Michigan and its athletic department haven’t been without their fair share of controversies as of late, most notably the firing of former president Mark Schlissel over an inappropriate relationship with a subordinate. There was also, as alluded to earlier, that time when Howard hit a Wisconsin assistant coach, leading to Howard’s suspension at the end of the regular season this spring.
However, what the athletic department has done is made waves in areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion that have not been matched by other schools in the Big Ten — including Ohio State.
Hail to the Victors!