Jim Harbaugh believes he has a secret weapon to prepare for Alabama Football's Jalen Milroe. Harbaugh is glad to talk about it, so in that sense it is no secret. The secret is in Harbaugh's contention that Michigan's backup QB, Alex Orji can be compared to Milroe.
Recently, Jim Harbaugh described Jalen Milroe as a polished Alex Orji. Was the Michigan coach just trying to instill confidence in his team? Or did he foolishly give the Crimson Tide some bulletin board material? Nick Saban is a wordsmith; something that Harbaugh is not. Perhaps Harbaugh honestly believes what he said and it never occurred to him the comment could further motivate the Crimson Tide.
Other Michigan coaches have gone into more detail about Orji and Michigan's game preparation. On Thursday, Michigan's Defensive Coordinator, Jesse Minter said,
"He’s (Orji) done a really good job. It’s hard to simulate a guy like Jalen Milroe. Alex has a unique skill set that we can try to simulate him, but to say we can simulate him to a T is probably not fair to him and how well he’s played this year. But Alex has done a great job trying to give us the best."- Matt Stahl, al.com
Alabama football fans are primed to take offense to anything said by Jim Harbaugh. So his statement that the difference between Jalen Milroe and an unproven quarterback was only "polish" rankled many.
The difference in career stats between Milroe and Orji speaks volumes. Orji has completed one pass in his two-season, college career for a total of five passing yards. Playing in seven games, he has rushed for 106 yards.
Orji is similar to Jalen Milroe in size at 6'3" and 236 lbs. He is said to have excellent speed for his size. Otherwise, there are no similarities. Suggesting Michigan has an edge from prepping for Alabama with Orji presenting Milroe's skill sets is fanciful.
Alabama Football knows Michigan has no Jalen Milroe
The Wolverines have a very good quarterback in J.J. McCarthy. McCarthy's passing accuracy, pocket presence, elusiveness and speed put pressure on the best defenses. But McCarthy is no Jalen Milroe and neither is Alex Orji - no matter what Jim Harbaugh says.
Note: Orji stats provided by mgoblue.com