Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is considered one of the preeminent quarterback whisperers in football. But with new offensive coordinator Josh Gattis now running the offense, Harbaugh appears to be letting his new assistant take a larger role.
In a recent interview with ESPN via The Michigan Insider, Harbaugh revealed that he is ceding total control of running the offense to Gattis. Harbaugh seemed to indicate that letting Gattis control the whole offense may have been a part of the deal to hire him.
"You run your offense, all your stuff," Harbaugh told him. "We'll get you a contract today. I don't want to miss on another chance to hire you."
Gattis previously served as co-offensive coordinator at Alabama, and had been a key member of James Franklin's staff at Penn State and Vanderbilt before that. He joined Jim Harbaugh's staff this past off-season after helping develop the Crimson Tide offense into the sixth-best in the nation.
The 35-year-old Gattis similarly revealed that Harbaugh has not interfered in his running the offense since they starting training.
"At first it was like, 'OK, I'm about to change all this. We good here?'" Gattis said. "But he's never questioned it. He stressed to me that it's my terminology, my plays, my offense. After that, I didn't need to [go] back to him and ask for approval. I haven't done that once. I think he's enjoying the offense."
Harbaugh explained that Gattis' offense is more aggressive and with a higher tempo than what he ran in his first few years with the Wolverines.
"I like that there is an attack feel that the defense has to be aware of," Harbaugh said. "And then the tempo, that feels good, too. That feels like we're attacking."
Michigan's offense has scored an average of five touchdowns or more over the past two seasons, but has not cracked the top ten since Harbaugh took over.
Last year, the offense was stymied in tough losses to Notre Dame and in the Peach Bowl against Florida.