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Jim Harbaugh Claims College Athletes Are Lying About Mental Health on Transfer Waivers

ANN ARBOR, MI - NOVEMBER 03: Michigan Wolverines Head football coach Jim Harbaugh watches the pregame warms ups prior to the start of the game against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Michigan Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Leon Halip/Getty Images

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, much like Alabama head coach Nick Saban, has been very open about his disdain for the transfer portal.

That hatred has manifested in the most despicable way possible, as he accused former Wolverine and current Cincinnati player James Hudson of lying about his reason for transferring in order to get a waiver on the requisite year off and play right away.

Hudson said he suffered from depression during his time at Michigan, but his request to play right away was not approved because he couldn't document his mental illness. Harbaugh, in a particularly questionable move, claimed that players have been lying about depression on their waiver requests for some time now.

Mental health among football players, especially college football players, is a nuanced topic that requires careful inspection and debate. Harbaugh promoting that archaic tough-guy and "man up" mentality is not only harmful to the transfer process and to players in the short term, but it could stifle long-term growth with regards to understanding the subject.

Mental health is not something trivial you lie about to game the system. It's a debilitating illness. The lack of understanding from Harbaugh, who is ostensibly here to help develop young men, is shocking.