Home NCAA WATCH: J.J. McCarthy Wears “FREE Harbaugh” Shirt In Support Of Beloved Coach

WATCH: J.J. McCarthy Wears “FREE Harbaugh” Shirt In Support Of Beloved Coach

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WATCH: J.J. McCarthy Wears “FREE Harbaugh” Shirt In Support Of Beloved Coach
(Credit: AP Photo / Tony Ding)

Michigan Wolverines quarterback, J.J. McCarthy sent a powerful message of support to his suspended head coach, Jim Harbaugh, by donning a “FREE Harbaugh” shirt before and after Saturday’s game against East Carolina.

The gesture was part of a heartfelt tribute to the coach who is serving a school-imposed three-game suspension amidst an ongoing NCAA investigation into improper recruiting contacts and alleged non-cooperation.

McCarthy, who led the Wolverines to a convincing 30-3 victory, expressed his sentiments, saying: “I just want my coach back.”

McCarthy wore Harbaugh’s #4 shirt with the word “FREE” handwritten on white tape above the coach’s name during various phases of game day, including arriving off the team bus, pregame warmups, and the postgame news conference.

The Wolverines also demonstrated their support for Harbaugh on the field, lining up in a formation reminiscent of Harbaugh’s playing days with Michigan, a single-file “train” formation, while all players raised four fingers in reference to Harbaugh’s jersey number.

“That was definitely a tribute to Coach Harbaugh,” McCarthy explained. “That was pretty cool to do that.”

Jim Harbaugh’s suspension meant that defensive coordinator Jesse Minter assumed the role of acting head coach for Saturday’s game, while offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore also served a one-game suspension in connection to the NCAA investigation.

Despite the absence of key coaching staff, the Wolverines remained focused and determined, with McCarthy delivering an impressive performance, throwing for 280 yards and three touchdown passes.

McCarthy revealed that both Harbaugh and Moore watched Saturday’s game together while serving their suspensions. Harbaugh continued to play a pivotal role in preparing the team during the week, helping with the game plan.

“When I saw him last night, it really hit me that it’s really going down,” Minter acknowledged.

Sherrone Moore is set to return next week for Michigan’s game against UNLV, with Jay Harbaugh and Mike Hart sharing head-coaching duties in the interim. Moore will then take over as head coach for the third game of the season against Bowling Green.

Despite the resounding victory, McCarthy emphasized the team’s yearning for their coach’s presence on the sideline, stating: “I personally felt like something was missing today, and it was definitely him.”

In case anyone didn’t realize how much Harbaugh is loved by his team, they do now.

How do you think Michigan will do this year?

Is this Harbaugh’s best Wolverine team ever?

Can they win the national championship? Or do you feel they’re a tad overrated?

 

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