Michigan Man – Jim Harbaugh and the Rebirth of Wolverines Football {Book Review}

I received a copy of Michigan Man:  Jim Harbaugh and the Rebirth of Wolverines Football ” ($26.95 value) in exchange for this promotion. Any opinions expressed here are honest and my own. 

The University of Michigan boasts more victories on the gridiron than any other school.  11 of those wins happened to be in National Championship games.  The Wolverines’ tradition of success is matched only by the loyalty of their supporters.

But Michigan has seen its down years, too.  As recently as 2014 the Wolverine’s posted a losing record.  Since then, the program has found its footing.  In Michigan Man:  Jim Harbaugh and the Rebirth of Wolverines Football, sportswriter Angelique Chengelis combines her knowledge and passion for all things Michigan football to present a thoughtful look at how the school, the fans, and Coach Jim Harbaugh have brought the Wolverines back to the forefront of college football.  Highlights include:

  • A heartfelt foreword from Jim’s father, Jack Harbaugh, explaining what makes the University of Michigan unique
  • An inside look at how the shared experience of playing for Bo Schembechler led to Jim Hackett’s successful recruitment of Harbaugh
  • Recaps of some of the Harbaugh’s most impressive victories at the helm, including the dramatic win over #8 Wisconsin to remain undefeated
  • Insights on the absurd antics and genius techniques Harbaugh employs to get the most out of his players
  • What to expect looking forward to the future of the program


Truthfully, I know very little about football.  That being said and after reading this book, I can heartfully say, I learned a lot about the determination of this sport and how to give it all for a team and school.  In Michigan Man, Chengelis, describes the dedicated and determined coach, Jim Harbaugh, but also shares the out-of-the-box coach he really is.  Coaches can coach….or COACHES CAN COACH!  From the way Chengelis describes Harbaugh, this COACH CAN COACH!  Harbaugh is all about teaching moments and finding unique ways to stretch the experience of his players.  He isn’t afraid of teaching or training in a way no other coach has before.  He also isn’t afraid of having his name on every social media platform the next day for something he did or tried to make himself a better coach or his team…a BETTER team.  Other coaches envy his style and determination and his players seem to respect the coach and man he is.

Harbaugh’s mentor Bo Schembechler is mentioned several times in this book and also Harbaugh’s late father, Jack Harbaugh.  And from Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan background…he’s seen a lot by playing at Michigan and knowing it’s history and the hype of the school everyone calls “Michigan” and getting it back on its feet to WIN!

As shared in this book, football is a very competitive sport and Harbaugh is into his team winning all they can.  Of course, there have been disappointments along the way and competing against longtime rivals Ohio State and Michigan State are not easy to digest any time in the season.

All in all, Chengelis conveys that Harbaugh wants to fulfill his duty as a coach to be the best he can and, yes, winning seems to be very important, but I think the fulfillment of the leadership and growth he instills in his team and players is something that will be a stepping stone for their future.

If you’re a Michigan fan…you’ll enjoy this book!  If you LOVE football, you’ll enjoy this book!  If you’re a coach…you’ll LOVE this book!  Michigan Man:  Jim Harbaugh and the Rebirth of Wolverines Football can be purchased at www.triumphbooks.com.


About the Author

Angelique Chengelis is a sportswriter for the Detroit News. Michigan football has been her primary beat since 1992, but she has covered countless sporting events including Super Bowls, U.S. Opens, PGA Championships, Ryder Cups, Stanley Cup Finals, NBA Finals, Indianapolis 500, Daytona 500, and NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments. She has also been a contributor to ESPN’s NASCAR coverage as part of the NASCAR Now show. She lives in Detroit, Michigan.


Lindsey Jenn

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