Ezekiel Elliott: Harbaugh 'needs to check with reality'

Angelique S. Chengelis
The Detroit News
Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh

Former Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott said beating Michigan last fall in Michigan Stadium was “probably one of the top college moments” he’s had.

Elliott, appearing Friday on "The Paul Finebaum Show," was asked about the photo he tweeted at Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh last month after Harbaugh took a shot at Ohio State University athletic director Gene Smith on Twitter.

Ohio State continued its domination of Michigan with a 42-13 victory last November. Since 2000, the Buckeyes have a 13-3 record against Michigan.

“I tweeted out ‘Better luck next year,’ because honestly, that felt like a home game for us,” Elliott told the show. “We had so many Buckeyes there being in Ann Arbor in the Big House and having so many Buckeyes there and hearing the O-H-I-O chant in their house was just a special moment.

“Kind of seeing all their fans leave before the game’s over and seeing a red sea in their stadium was probably one of the top college moments I’ve had.”

Elliott said the Buckeyes wanted to prove they would not give up after losing to Michigan State the week before at Ohio Stadium.

“We were just tired of hearing everyone saying we’ve given up on the season,” Elliott said. “We wanted to show everyone we’re still a team and we’re going to play for each other and we’re going to finish this season out right.

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“Honestly, the biggest game of the year every year is versus that team up north and to hear people say we’re going to go up to Ann Arbor and lay down and let them stomp us, that kind of bothered us. We went in there with a chip on the shoulder and we showed the type of football team we were.”

Finebaum asked Elliott if he’s heard enough from and about Harbaugh.

“I am tired of hearing about coach Harbaugh,” Elliott said. “He needs to check with reality because at the end of the day you can’t talk smack about a rivalry when you haven’t won a rivalry game. You’ve got to win ballgames to talk behind it.”

Elliott said the reason Harbaugh has become a constant in college football headlines is the media interest. In fact, Finebaum is the host who two months ago began calling Harbaugh the “Donald Trump of college football” because of his ability to move the needle and go after the establishment.

“The media, you guys empower him,” Elliott said. “You guys give him so much attention so he just feeds off of that. At the end of the day we look at the win-loss total, we look to see what happens when you get on the field and that’s how I feel. In leaving my career three years with three gold pants (given to OSU players when they’ve beaten UM) and I’m pretty satisfied.”

Ohio State running back Ezekiel Elliott