Live updates from Big Ten media days: Jim Harbaugh says Michigan will beat Ohio State or 'die trying'

Big Ten football coaches and players have arrived in Indianapolis for the 2021 Big Ten media days event that signals college football is one step closer to starting. 

This year's event is the first since 2019 as last season's media days were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Big Ten went on to cancel the season, but eventually changed course. It's glad it did because the league was one win away from claiming College Football Playoff championship as Ohio State reached the sport's biggest game. 

Ohio State is scheduled to speak during the second day of media day, as Ohio State coach Ryan Day will speak from 12:30-12:45 p.m. Defensive end Zach Harrison, tight end Jeremy Ruckert and offensive lineman Thayer Munford are expected to speak from 1:15-2:15 p.m. Friday.

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Thursday's events will be highlight by Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren's opening remarks at 10:30 a.m. Penn State coach James Franklin will speak at noon and Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh at 12:30 p.m.

Follow Day 1 of Big Ten media days live below. 

Jim Harbaugh of Michigan acknowledges the Wolverines' recent lack of success against Ohio State.

Michigan's Jim Harbaugh is 0-5 against the Buckeyes, but said it's important for his team to beat Ohio State. In fact, he said they will do so, "or die trying."

Perhaps he was taking his cue from the music that played while he was waiting in the wings to speak. Right before commissioner Kevin Warren introduced Harbaugh, the Big Ten was playing the song "Staying Alive" over the speakers in Indianapolis. 

Michigan's Jim Harbaugh discusses the Wolverines' quarterback battle.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh confirmed that Cade McNamara is the team's No. 1 quarterback heading into fall camp. "You talk about a guy taking the reigns," said Harbaugh, "he's done that." 

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh steps to the podium in a blue suit, rather than the khakis he is known for.

"I know I'm here to have a really good day," Jim Harbaugh started his press conference. 

Pat Fitzgerald of Northwestern joins the list of Big Ten coaches giving the NCAA's new policy on name, image and likeness the thumbs up. 

So far today, Big Ten coaches have been universally supportive of college athletes making money off their name, image and likeness, with Northwestern's Pat Fitzgerald going so far as to mention that he was jealous. "Think how much dough I would have made in the mid 90s," he said.

Fitzgerald also lived up to his promise from this morning. 

Penn State's James Franklin reunited with his family after more than a year apart.

Because the youngest of his two daughters has sickle cell anemia, Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin has been living apart from his family rather than risk her being exposed to COVID-19. But he finally was able to spend time with them this offseason during a vacation, ending a 14-month period of separation. Franklin thanked those who have been taking steps to reduce the risk of transmitting the virus. "You're making a sacrifice for someone who doesn't have that choice," he said. 

Penn State coach James Franklin doesn't think much will change with former Ohio State assistant Mike Yurcich.

Former Ohio State passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach Mike Yurcich joined Penn State this offseason as the Nittany Lions offensive coordinator. Franklin wanted someone who would be on the same page with his offensive philosophy, and he's confident Yurcich is that man, because he has followed his career for a very long time.

Nebraska's Scott Frost is excited to have Trev Alberts as his athletics director.

Nebraska football coach Scott Frost said he and Alberts have kept in touch over the years. (Both are former Huskers players.) The two have already met four times since Alberts' hire as AD was announced just more than a week ago. 

Minnesota coach P.J. Fleck thinks his team's experience will be important this season.

The Golden Gophers squad that Ohio State faces in the season opener Sept. 2 is one of the most experienced in the Big Ten. They bring back 10 starters on offense and on defense. 

Head coach P.J. Fleck explained it this way: "We're a developmental program. We're going to take kids, high school to where they graduate. There will be times when we're more experienced and times when we're younger."

This is one of those times when he has a more veteran squad, and because of that, he's enthusiastic to coach this team — even more than usual, which Fleck admitted might be very hard to imagine, given his typical high-energy demeanor. 

Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren regrets nothing about 2020.

When asked what he has learned from criticism of how the league handled the coronavirus pandemic, Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren said he wouldn't change what happened. He only wishes the conference had done a better job communicating their decisions. 

Commissioner Kevin Warren implies the Big Ten is open to the idea of expansion.

Amid reports that Texas and Oklahoma are exploring joining the SEC, Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren was asked if the Big Ten is considering another round of expansion. He answered that they are always evaluating.

"I think what we have seen is that we are at an inflection point in college athletics," he said.

Commissioner Kevin Warren calls for federal legislation on name, image and likeness.

The NCAA is now allowing players to make money off their name, image and likeness, but the NCAA has not regulated specifics. So to make policies on NIL rights uniform across conferences, Warren called for the United States Congress to pass a law on the issue. 

Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson named to watch list.

On the same day that they were selected for preseason conference honors, Buckeye wide receivers Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson were named to the Biletnikoff Award watch list. The Biletnikoff Award goes each year to college football's best receiver, and the winner will be announced Dec. 9.

Commissioner Kevin Warren announces Barry Alvarez has a position with the conference.

Former Wisconsin football coach and athletics director Barry Alvarez is joining the Big Ten as a special advisor for football. 

"I trust Barry Alvarez implicitly," Warren said. "He means everything to this conference."

Alvarez is a member of the College Football, Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, and Wisconsin Halls of Fame.

Thayer Munford, Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson honored.

A conference media panel awarded preseason honors to five players from each Big Ten division. In the east, three of the honorees were Ohio State Buckeyes in wide receivers Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson and offensive lineman Thayer Munford. They joined Indiana quarterback Michael Penix Jr. and Penn State receiver Jahan Dotson. In the West, five different teams were represented as Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum, Minnesota running back Mohamed Ibrahim, Northwestern safety Brandon Joseph, Purdue receiver David Bell and Wisconsin linebacker Jack Sanborn were selected.

Big Ten media day 1 schedule

Thursday, July 22

10:15 - 11:00 a.m. Kevin Warren, Big Ten commissioner

11:00 - 11:15 a.m. P.J. Fleck, Minnesota

11:15 - 11:30 a.m. Michael Locksley, Maryland

11:30 - 11:45 a.m. Scott Frost, Nebraska

11:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Bret Bielema, Illinois

12:00 - 12:15 p.m. James Franklin, Penn State

12:15 - 12:30 p.m. Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern

12:30 - 12:45 p.m. Jim Harbaugh, Michigan

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