Desmond Howard thinks Jim Harbaugh should pick Michigan

The Detroit News

Desmond Howard, the former Michigan Heisman Trophy winner now an ESPN College GameDay analyst, said Jim Harbaugh is like the pretty girl in high school who has too many options for prom dates.

Howard, speaking on the Rich Eisen Show on Wednesday – Eisen also is a Michigan alum – discussed Harbaugh as the Wolverines' next head coach. Harbaugh, a former Michigan quarterback and currently the San Francisco 49ers' head coach, is considered interim athletic director Jim Hackett's top candidate to replace Brady Hoke as Michigan's head coach.

Howard was asked if Harbaugh-to-Michigan is a pipe dream.

"This is how I see Harbaugh -- I think Harbaugh is a really, really good coach," Howard said on the show. "His track record speaks to -- the proof is in the pudding -- so we know he's a very good coach, and we know that he's been successful in the NFL. We know that he's been successful in college when he was at Stanford.

"I just see Harbaugh right now as being like probably the cutest girl in school that everyone wants to take to the prom. It's like everyone wants to court him, college and NFL alike. He's like the most beautiful girl in high school everyone wants to take to prom, so now she has all these choices. It's almost like if she goes to the prom with you, then she's doing you a favor. It kind of has that sense to it. Now I could be dead wrong, I hope I am, but when I speak to different people and you hear stories about Jim and how the Jets will probably come after him, Oakland will probably come after him …"

Howard put himself in Harbaugh's shoes and said taking over at Michigan would be an easy choice.

"I guess my thing is, if I was in coaching, nothing would satisfy me more than to say, 'To hell with all of this, I'm going up to Ann Arbor, and I'm getting that ship right,'" Howard said. "'That's going to be my coaching legacy. I'm want to go back to Ann Arbor, and I want to get this thing right. I want to get this program back to where it belongs, that's my only goal in coaching right now.' But see, Jim, because he's been so successful, he could say, 'Well, I want to go back to the Super Bowl and see if I can win one.'"

Charles Woodson, Michigan's 1997 Heisman Trophy winner currently with the Oakland Raiders, was asked by Eisen on Tuesday's show if he'd like to see Harbaugh wind up at the Raiders or at Michigan.

"If the choice was out there it would definitely be Michigan for me," Woodson said. "(He's) a guy that played here. I think the fans would love it. I think it would be great for recruiting and all of that and just to have a guy who's proven -- he's won everywhere he's been as a coach, and I don't think it would be any different if he went to Michigan."