Friday Finds: Harbaugh vs. Paul Feinbaum, Saban’s recruiting pitch, Reds rebuild

College football offseason is officially underway now that we have a Jim Harbaugh tweet to talk about. 

As a change of pace, the Michigan coach actually seems to be on the right track with this one – other than calling his most recent victim by the wrong name, of course. 

If you’re confused, here’s the background (hat tip: College Football Talk): ESPN’s Paul Finebaum accused Harbaugh of cheating by at least considering hiring a highly regarded prospect’s father to his staff. 

Cheating is, of course, a significant charge, and it doesn’t really fit here, so Harbaugh is well within his rights to defend himself. 

Hiring a recruit’s parent or coach (both things Harbaugh has already done) is not against the rules, at least not yet, and Finebaum is in fact well known as an SEC homer, so unlike Harbaugh’s unfair attack on Ohio State athletics director Gene Smith, this jab seems fairly justified. 

Does this new development mean a Harbaugh team might actually win a championship next season? 

Stay tuned… 

Yesterday at spring training, the debate of the day seemed to be if the Reds can or should say they are rebuilding. 

That’s mostly a matter of semantics, but it’s interesting nonetheless. 

“It’s the responsibility of the club to tell fans this is where we are and we’re being realistic,” manager Bryan Price said. “It’s hard to tell that to your fan base and not have it affect your players. As soon as you buy into a rebuild it’s like saying it doesn’t matter if you win or lose … but it does matter.”

Truth be told, the Reds were more in tear-down mode the last two seasons, and now they can more accurately say they are building again. 

I know there are plenty of fans in the camp that the only way they can get better is not only to trade away all their assets but lose as much as possible to stockpile high draft picks. My study of the Cubs’ rebuild showed there is some merit to that... but I still never quite bought into feeling fine about the team finishing so close to the basement the last two seasons because it was actually still fielding a respectable lineup that included multiple players who have been All-Stars. 

There are also those who can’t stomach any season the team doesn’t seem to be trying, so there is a balancing act to be sure. The team should never take fans for granted, but it has to do what is smart in terms of putting the best possible team on the field over the long haul. 

Then of course health is always the elephant in the room. This is shaping up to be another of those seasons where if everything goes right, they can be competitive. The last couple years they would have probably won a lot more games if not for the high number of injuries, so maybe they’re due...

We gave some love to Dayton basketball yesterday, so it’s only fair to highlight Wright State today. 

The Raiders held on for an 84-81 victory at Youngstown State last night. Mark Alstork scored 33 points as Scott Nagy’s team inched closer to 20 wins in his first season at the helm. 

A Horizon League title looks out of reach, but WSU is positioning itself to make some noise in the conference tournament -- again... 

Speaking of the Flyers, Archie Miller made a change in his starting lineup this week and explained why yesterday... 

If you missed our weekly recruiting roundup yesterday, you can find it here

Of course that news cycle never stops, so we’ve already got to more items of note. 

Dunbar running back Tavion Thomas, whose recruiting has blown up since about the time teammate Joseph Scates committed to Michigan State, added an offer from Georgia shortly after Alabama coach Nick Saban gave him an invitation to play for the Crimson Tide. 

Meanwhile, if you have ever wondered what it’s like to get a phone call from Saban explaining he wants you to play football for him, here’s a glimpse. 

One of the other competitors for area’s top running back, Trotwood-Madison’s Raveion Hargrove, shared last night he intends to take a trip to Rutgers to see what former Ohio State assistant Chris Ash has to offer in his second year as the head man for the Scarlet Knights. 

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Sports

Prep football: Fairfield rolls on in GMC, blanks Princeton 27-0
Prep football: Fairfield rolls on in GMC, blanks Princeton 27-0

The Fairfield High School football team extended the perfect start to its Greater Miami Conference schedule Friday night by going on the road and smothering Princeton 27-0. Taimar Boykin and Malik Vann notched rushing scores for the Indians (3-2 overall, 3-0 in the GMC), and Chico Robinson caught the lone touchdown pass on the evening to help Fairfield...
Week 5: Northmont, Wayne go OT; Valley View and Beavercreek still unbeaten; 200 more rushing yards for Bowser
Week 5: Northmont, Wayne go OT; Valley View and Beavercreek still unbeaten; 200 more rushing yards for Bowser

Northmont was down two touchdowns at halftime, but out-scored Wayne 21-7 in the second half, before falling to the Warriors 38-35 in double-overtime. The Thunderbolts were on the verge of winning when Wayne’s Justin Harris intercepted the ball on the 1 yard line, setting the Warriors up for the game-winning field goal. The game...
Prep football: Martin’s school-record rushing night leads Badin past RB
Prep football: Martin’s school-record rushing night leads Badin past RB

Led by a long list of great running backs, the Badin High School football team built a reputation over the years on being physical and rushing the football. Friday night in a rare home game for the Rams at Fairfield Stadium, Badin senior Lavassa Martin jumped to the top of that list. »PHOTOS: Nick Graham’s gallery from the game »RELATED...
Outdoors: Deer archery season opens Saturday

Deer hunting in Ohio officially opens 30 minutes before sunrise Saturday with the beginning of the archery season. The long season runs through Feb. 4, 2018. Hunters will find regulations are similar to last year, but they should pay close attention to county bag limits because some have changed. Most of the changes affect eastern and southeastern...
Golf: Shaker Run finally seems to be in good hands

When Armco Steel opened the Shaker Run Golf Club in Warren County for its employees in 1979, it had a beautiful course through a mostly-wooded area. When Shaker Run opens in 2018, parts of the course will resemble most other courses built in the last 40 years. Some of the fairways could be lined with condominiums. Preparation of the land is under way...
More Stories