Michigan announced Thursday afternoon that professional wrestling legend Ric Flair will be part of the Wolverines' "Signing of the Stars" national signing day event next Wednesday, Feb. 3.
The Wolverines' official Twitter account first posted about the news, complete with a proper GIF of the Nature Boy himself:
Michigan Athletics @UMichAthletics
Pumped to have 16-time world champion THE Nature Boy (@RicFlairNatrBoy) join us next week. #GoBlue #WOOOOO https://t.co/Y71AUu950v1/28/2016, 8:22:03 PM
According to the program's website, Flair will be one of at least a dozen celebrity guests at the event, which will be held on campus from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The announced celebrities so far are:
- Ric Flair
- Lou Holtz (former college football coach and analyst)
- Mike Shanahan (former NFL coach)
- Desmond Howard (former Heisman winner and Michigan football player)
- Denard Robinson (NFL running back and former Michigan football player)
- Todd McShay (football analyst)
- Jon Jansen (analyst and former Michigan football player)
- Jack Kennedy (musician and former Michigan football player)
- Brad Keselowski (NASCAR driver)
- Derek Holland (MLB pitcher)
- Jessica Szohr (actress)
- Josh Gracin (musician)
Flair and Harbaugh go back to the latter's time as coach of the San Francisco 49ers, when the wrestling icon gave a pep talk to the team prior to their NFC Wild Card Game against the Green Bay Packers in Jan. 2014.
The two have gone back and forth on Twitter since Harbaugh became the coach of his alma mater. Flair congratulated Harbaugh on Michigan's rout of Florida in the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl on New Year's Day:
Ric Flair® @RicFlairNatrBoy
Great bowl win today @CoachJim4UM ! You're the man!1/2/2016, 1:53:57 AM
Coach Harbaugh @CoachJim4UM
To be da man, you've gotta beat da man & you da man! #BigHouseWrestleMania “@RicFlairNatrBoy: Great bowl win @CoachJim4UM ! You're the man!”1/3/2016, 4:38:00 PM
A few days before that exchange, per Jordan Heck of Sporting News, Harbaugh told a Detroit radio show that he wanted Michigan Stadium to host a future edition of WWE's WrestleMania event.
Heck also noted Harbaugh agreed to a suggestion from one of the show's producers, which was for him to referee a match between Flair, his favorite wrestler, and Hulk Hogan.
Now Michigan is calling on Harbaugh's wrestling hero/Twitter pal to cap off what has been a wild recruiting cycle for the Wolverines.
Michigan is currently at No. 5 in 247Sports' Composite Team Rankings for the class of 2016, and the Wolverines are in the running for No. 1 overall player Rashan Gary and several other blue-chip targets.
Unfortunately for those of us who would love to see a 16-time world heavyweight champion at a college football signing day party in-person, the "Signing of the Stars" is invite only.
However, the event will be streamed on The Players' Tribune, which was founded by former MLB superstar Derek Jeter, who signed a letter of intent to play baseball at Michigan before his draft selection in 1992 by the New York Yankees.