New offensive coordinator Josh Gattis will 'live, breathe, sleep Michigan football'
Gattis joins Jim Harbaugh on 'Attack Each Day' podcast
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – If there was ever any doubt that new offensive coordinator Josh Gattis is a good fit for head coach Jim Harbaugh's staff, it was erased during Tuesday's episode of the "Attack Each Day" podcast run by the Harbaughs.
Gattis joined the podcast and displayed a Harbaugh-type enthusiasm for the Michigan football program.
"I'm glad to be here, really excited to be a part of this program and this community," Gattis said. "My family's excited, and glad to wear the Block M."
Harbaugh said the first few days of working with Gattis have gone smoothly.
"We've been working here the last couple days in the office, through the weekend and today, and really, really excited," Harbaugh said. "You can see, just the resume, just the track record of success when you look at Josh as a coach. The development of players really jumps out at you right away. Wherever he coaches, they are successful at the highest level: All-American at Western Michigan, at Vanderbilt, a couple at Penn State and a couple at Alabama, as well.
"Josh is well-regarded across the country, in the world of football at all levels, so that was getting the right person on the bus, really; somebody that I really felt could coordinate our offense and run the whole offense. Very excited about that. We got better."
Gattis said he's still got connections in Michigan from his time at Western Michigan. He also said it was a personal and professional dream of his to become an offensive coordinator.
"This was a moment right here, as a family, that was too strong for us, emotionally, as well as the pride of this program and just my familiarity with this program and being in the Big Ten for four years (at Penn State) and having to battle with Coach Harbaugh and Michigan. Not only battling on the field, but battling recruiting wise. It gave me an appreciation for this program and I'm so prideful to be here."
Harbaugh said he heard through the grapevine that Gattis was considering leaving Alabama to become the offensive coordinator at Maryland, so he gave him a call and asked if he would have any interest in coming to Michigan.
Harbaugh said he spoke to Gattis on the phone at 10 a.m., and an agreement was in place by 3:30 p.m.
"When I talked to him, he said, 'You're going to get my best,'" Harbaugh said. "When he said that, that's what we're looking for: someone that's hungry to make us better, too. So we'll get all the final things sorted as we go, but getting all the right people on the bus and getting them in the right seats -- I think that'll happen quickly and it's already going really smoothly so far."
Gattis commented several times on the connection between the Michigan coaches.
"I think we have the best coaching staff in the country," Gattis said. "I think our chemistry is one of the things that is important. Those guys have been open-armed to me and my family. They've been welcoming. This is by far the most hospitable staff that I've been around -- from checking on you for little things to making sure your family's OK.
"(Family) was something that was really important to Coach Harbaugh, and when he said that to me, it really showed me not only the type of coach he is, the type of man he is, the type of character, but the type of family person and leader that I truly want to be around. I want my kids to be in this environment because it's been so welcoming.
"It's been a dream for me to get to this position, and it's even more of a dream to be here on this amazing staff, representing this amazing football program. When I told coach, exactly right, 'You're going to get my best, and that's the thing I can deliver and promise to you each and every day.' I'm going to live, breathe and sleep Michigan football and how we can continue to make this offense achieve the goals that we want to achieve.
"I couldn't be more proud to be here wearing the blue, so Go Blue."
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