After following the Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams for its “Hard Knocks”-esque series, “All or Nothing,” Amazon expanded into the college ranks for an eight-episode run with the Michigan Wolverines.
Like most passionate Notre Dame Fighting Irish fans, I can’t stand the Wolverines. I hate their helmets, their fight song, their smug coach and their “Michigan man” nonsense.
I’m going to watch this series, so you don’t have to. These are my real-time reactions of the third episode, with time stamps just in case you do decide, “Yeah, maybe I want to hear Jim Harbaugh talk about accidentally killing his baby boy.”
This episode includes the loss at the hands of the Michigan State Spartans and the win over the Indiana Hoosiers. It features junior running back Karan Higdon and his three-year-old daughter, Kiyah, as well as sophomore linebacker Devin Bush, whose father, Devin Sr., is a defensive analyst with the team.
- 7:54 Quarterback John O’Korn throws his third pick of the day. A morose, La Croix-drinking Pep Hamilton calls down to Coach Jim Harbaugh: “Can we handle the ball, coach?”
Harbaugh: “Hard to control the ball?”
O’Korn: “Yeah, I can’t throw.”
Harbaugh: “He can’t throw.”
Yeah, John, your 16-for-35 for 198 yards and zero touchdowns line really spelled that out nicely.
- 12:10 Here’s 50 frames of Michigan players looking all sad...ya know...just in case you can find a use for this in early September.
- 13:01 Narrator Mark Harmon: “The reality is that their goals at the Big Ten title and a birth into the College Football Playoff are still within reach if the Wolverines can recover psychologically.”
Since the Wolverines went 4-4 from this point onward, can we therefore assume the Spartans broke their rival’s will to win?
- 17:58 Many coaches are insufferable around the media after they lose, few moreso than Harbaugh.
Media member: “Coach, after watching the film, would you have liked to have gotten the ball to Karan Higdon more? It seems like he was getting five and a half yards a carry. Could he have gotten the ball more perhaps, especially in the rain and the wind?”
Harbaugh: “Uh, yeah, he had a — Karan played well.”
“But you’re not going to answer my question?”
“What? You want to question the —”
“Do you think he should’ve gotten the ball more?”
“You want to question the play calling? Um, that is usually the case when something doesn’t work, so...”
“But you don’t question that, how much he got the ball there? Or don’t want to with us?”
“No. I, uh — that’s a standard question that when a play works, ‘Hey, great play call.’ You run a third down draw against Florida and it works, ‘Hey, great call.’ You call a play that doesn’t work and you know, would you wish you would have called a different play? That’s a very easy thing to do, so...”
- 19:37 Notre Dame fans are quite familiar with the excuse “in a monsoon,” as if their opponent wasn’t also playing in similarly terrible conditions. So when junior wide receiver Grant Perry qualifies O’Korn’s terrible performance by qualifying the game was played “in a monsoon,” well...that’s just nonsense. YOU LOST TO A TEAM THAT GOT ITS ASS WHIPPED BY NOTRE DAME TWO WEEKS PRIOR. YOU SHOULD HAVE KILLED THESE WEAKLINGS.
- 29:06 Here goes Harbaugh, again, on one of his crazy, macabre anecdotes:
“Think about the ball. You’re a running back. Anybody whose got the ball, SQUEEZE IT! This week, got home about eleven o’clock, Sarah was still up, baby monitor goes off, baby John’s up there crying, up in his room. ‘Hey, Sarah. I’ll get this. Let me get this.’
“Get up, go up to John’s room, could smell it right when I get in there, you know. Pooped his pants.
“Once I picked him up, I knew what I had to do. I had to take him down, a pretty — some steep stairs, to get to the changing table and I had to start thinking, ‘What is the worst possible thing that could happen that there’s no recovery from?’ If I fall down those stairs with the baby in my arms. I mean, it’s over for him.
“And I’m wearing this sweatpants. I’ve got those gray sweatpants, pulled those things up. This could happen. You could step on that sweatpant as you’re going down the stairs and it’s over.
“I’m squeezing him. I’ve got him right there and I’ve got my other hand on the rail as I’m going down those stairs. Now I’m not squeezing him like I would a football. You can’t squeeze a baby like — you can’t squeeze into a baby like that, but I got him.
“Once I got to the bottom of those stairs, I’m thinking about the toys. Kids could have left their toys on the ground, could be something to step on and that baby’s not coming out is the point. And when you’ve got the ball in your hand, there is no other job. There is no job more important than that ball in the hand.”
MEMO TO JIM: YOU CAN CHANGE A BABY ANYWHERE. YOU DON’T HAVE TO NAVIGATE YOUR OWN TEMPLE OF DOOM TO CHANGE A DIAPER. BUY A SECOND CHANGING TABLE. AND HIRE A HOUSECLEANER FOR THE TOYS. DAMMIT, JIM. THIS ISN’T THAT HARD.