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#pounditSaturday, January 28, 2023

Jim Harbaugh shares who is the X-factor for Michigan

Jim Harbaugh in Michigan gear

Aug 31, 2019; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh before the game against the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan wore down Ohio State on Saturday in a dominant performance that got them one step closer to another College Football Playoff berth. Several Wolverines players had their best game of the season in the rivalry showdown, but head coach Jim Harbaugh said there is one member of his staff who should be getting more credit.

Harbaugh told reporters this week that he views strength and conditioning coach Ben Herbert as “the X-factor for our entire football program.”

Herbert is in his fifth season working on Harbaugh’s staff. It is not often that a strength coach receives praise for a program’s success, but Harbaugh obviously thinks Michigan would not be where they are without Herbert.

If you had to come up with two words to describe Michigan’s performance against Ohio State, “strength” and “conditioning” would be perfect choices. They wore down the Buckeyes with a balanced attack and power running. Ohio State had plenty of chances to come back in the second half, but Michigan looked like they had far more juice. Perhaps that was the work of Herbert paying off.

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