Jake Allen, the former St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) quarterback who signed with the Florida Gators on National Signing Day, gave an interview to SEC Country in which he alleges Harbaugh told him, “‘I don’t give a s–t about your grades,’” when Allen was at Michigan’s camp.
Here is the full quote from Allen, for context:
“I was messing around and said, ‘I got a C in third grade.’ Jim Harbaugh overheard and screams, ‘I don’t give a s–t about your grades,’ ” Allen said. “Then he realized I was part of the quarterback group that had recruits in it so he just kind of walked away. It was weird. I couldn’t wait to get out of there after that, and we left early.
“Coach Harbaugh definitely rubbed me the wrong way.”
It’s difficult to discern, even reading the quote with context, if Harbaugh meant he doesn’t care about your grades in third grade, or if he was joking.
Allen didn’t respond to USA TODAY High School Sports’ request Tuesday for comment.
Take the quote for what it is. This is a recruit who didn’t respond to Harbaugh’s recruiting and instead chose an in-state school where he will be the top quarterback in its incoming class.
Of course, there was almost immediate reaction in defense of Harbaugh.
Others noted the case of freshman running back Kareem Walker, an Under Armour All-American last year who was not allowed to play this past season and was removed from football to focus on his academics. He eventually was allowed to practice, but the coaches opted not to burn his redshirt year after he missed so much of the season.
“I got a 3.0 this semester,” Walker told MLive.com during the runup to the Orange Bowl. “At Michigan. That was like ‘wow.” That felt good. I worked hard for that. …
“I had to leave practice one day for a paper and I ended up getting a B+ on that. I told him about that grade. He liked it.”