What's the difference between drafting as an NFL coach and recruiting as a college coach?
Visibility, for one thing.
The sharpest football minds in the NFL can huddle in a room and put together a dynamite draft class in relative secrecy -- which is actually preferred. By contrast, smart college coaches like to be seen because it helps in recruiting. Case in point: New Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, who probably wouldn't be coaching first base for the Oakland Athletics in a spring training game Saturday if he were still coaching the San Francisco 49ers.
Never thought you'd see him without khaki pants, huh?
Harbaugh will be waving players to second base on doubles to the gap in Mesa, Ariz., where the A's play home spring training games at Hohokam Park. But he's been seen plenty of other places since taking the UM job, too. Harbaugh returned to Twitter in January and has been documenting his rounds ever since, hanging out with everyone from country music star Garth Brooks to Michigan's marching band to former Cincinnati Reds and Michigan baseball player Chris Sabo.
Not that a head coach at Michigan, particularly one who played quarterback at the school, needs a higher profile. But in a sport where recruiting can make or break coaching careers, no amount of name recognition with teenagers is ever enough.