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What We Learned from Jim Harbaugh's First 100 Tweets as Michigan Head Coach

Published by Bleacher Report on Fri, 20 Mar 2015

When Jim Harbaugh took over Michigan at the end of 2014, he made a recruiting-minded move many college head coaches before him have: He joined Twitter.And it didn't take long for Harbaugh's account@CoachJim4UMto take off running.As opposed to Urban Meyerwhose account appears to be run by an assistant for PR purposesorBrian Kelly, who frequently just retweets other Notre Dame-related accounts, there's no questioning who's behind Harbaugh's 140-character-or-less thoughts. In just two months, Harbaugh's unique tweets have made him college football's second-most followed coach, trailing Meyer by an approximate 244,000-205,000 margin.But more than appeal to recruits, Harbaugh's unfiltered thoughts have provided a preview as to what we can expect during his tenure in Ann Arbor. With 105 tweets currently to his credit, the former 49ers head coach has been one of college football's most active tweeters, giving insight into both his personal life and football philosophy'So what have we learned about Harbaugh in his first 100-plus tweets'He's not afraid to go at Urban MeyerHarbaugh's Twitter had barely been active for a month when he first sent a tweet that sent shock waves through the college football community.In a battle that went all the way up until national signing day, Harbaugh lost out to Meyer in the race for the services of Detroit Cass Tech running back Mike Weber. But when Ohio State running backs coach Stan Drayton left the following day, many believed Weber may have been reconsidering his options, leading to a tweet from Harbaugh that seemed to be a pretty clear message to Meyer:From there, the college football blogosphere was abuzz, believing Michigan's new head coach had just "subtweeted" the reigning national champion. Buckeyes director of player personnel Mark Pantoni must have thought so as well, as just a few hours later he posted his own thought of the day:The whole thing may have been silly or even unintentional, and ultimately Weber wound up sticking with his pledge to the Buckeyes. But it was the first sign that in a new era of college football's most-storied rivalry, Harbaugh isn't going to back down.He's a fan of fine diningOK, maybe not quite.Having spent the entirety of his coaching career in Californiafirst at San Diego, then Stanford, then the 49ersHarbaugh finds himself back in the Midwest for the first time since spending the offseason with the Detroit Lions in 2001. Harbaugh now won't have to travel nearly as far to enjoy his favorite restaurant, which he revealed to theSan Jose Mercury News' The TK Showis Cracker Barrel."There's another fantastic thing about being in the Midwest, is there's a Cracker Barrel," Harbaugh said."There's not a Cracker Barrel in California."On Feb. 16, Harbaugh took to Twitter to prove that he wasn't kidding:And just recently, the Tennessee-based chain repaid the new Wolverines head coach for the visit, sending him a customized rocking chair, which he shared via his account:He's a big believer in celebrating birthdaysAt 51 years old, one would think that aside from his own children's, Harbaugh would be over birthdays. But his Twitter account tells a different story.In fact, one of his most consistent Twitter habits has been wishing his new players well on their respective dates of birth. And in typical Harbaugh fashion, a simple "happy birthday" hardly suffices:For those wondering, Harbaugh's own birthday falls on Dec. 23. And while his own Twitter account wasn't active back then, that didn't stop his future employer from pointing it out a week before hiring him:He's a fan of entertainment...of all kindsAside from his alleged subtweet to Meyer, no tweet that Harbaugh has posted has drawn as much attention as the one he posted on March 3. It was then that he congratulated daytime TV star Judge Judy on her latest extension, while also revealing he's a huge fan of the quick-witted judge:This actually wasn't the first time Harbaugh had spoken fondly of the honorableJudy Sheindlin. At the NFL Scouting Combine in 2013, he even said he's adopted some of the judge's philosophy when it comes to evaluating players with perceived character issues."Somebody that's not truthful, that's big to me. I'm a big fan of the Judge Judy show. When you lie in Judge Judy's courtroom, it's over," Harbaugh said. "Your credibility is completely lost, you stand no chance of winning that case. I learned that from her. And it's very powerfuland true. 'Cause if somebody lies to you, then how can you trust anything they say after that'"As if that wasn't enough, Harbaugh later attended a taping of Judge Judy with his father, Jack Harbaugh, where the two could be spotted sitting in the front row of a 2013 episode.Harbaugh's kind words were received by Sheindlin, who took to her own account to issue a public thank you. This only excited Ann Arbor's favorite son even more, who again took to Twitter to praise the judge:It's not just daytime TV that Harbaugh has professed a passion for, but music as well. Following the Grammy Awards, the 14-year NFL quarterback extended a congratulations to the night's big winner, Sam Smith, while also stating that he appreciated the message in Smith's music:And just to show that Harbaugh is a fan of all music, he also made note of Detroit native Big Sean's latest album, Dark Sky Paradise, debuting at No. 1 on the Billboard charts last month:He's enthusiasticIf there's been one overarching theme in Harbaugh's tweets for the past two months, it's been his unrelenting enthusiasm. Whether he's wishing a happy birthday, congratulating a musician or subtweeting a rival, Harbaugh has made it clear that if there's one thing his program will be known for, it's its excitement:Just around the midway point of Michigan's spring practice session, it's too early to tell whether the enthusiasm he shows on Twitter will carry over onto the football field for the Wolverines this fall. But if his previous stops are any indication, it certainly will, as Harbaugh's intensity rarely goes unnoticed.Even when he's just behind a keyboard:Ben Axelrod is Bleacher Report's Big Ten Lead Writer. You can follow him on Twitter @BenAxelrod. Unless noted otherwise, all quotes were obtained firsthand. All statistics courtesy of CFBStats.com. Recruiting rankings courtesy of 247Sports.
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