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Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind

In 2015, David Turnley — Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer and Stamps professor — was given unprecedented access to the U-M football team. His mission: to document every aspect of coach Jim Harbaugh's first season with the program.

300 of Turnley's stunning black and white photos accompany Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind, a 9,000 word essay by Harbaugh on his coaching philosophy and the blood, sweat, and commitment it takes to make any organization great. The essay and photos have been published as a beautiful large format hardcover book by Foster Park Publishing.


Since graduating from Michigan in 1977, Turnley has chronicled some of the world’s most important historical events, leaders, and cultural icons. A Detroit Free Press staff photographer from 1980-98, Turnley photographed Nelson Mandela and the South African struggle, and covered such events as the Persian Gulf War, revolutions in Eastern Europe, student uprisings in China, and the disintegration of the Soviet Union.

With Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind, Harbaugh and Turnley capture a triumphant return to Michigan football. Of Turnley, Harbaugh states: “We respect David. He gives us his time, talent and energy every day. And his effort is over the top, at times photographing in the huddle. At other times, laying down in the field in the middle of a scrimmage to capture the blood, sweat, and tears of our program. David has told me, as a veteran war photographer of 30 years, that if the pictures aren’t good enough, you aren’t close enough. I am happy that we give David unprecedented access and that he has become part of our team.”


Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind is available through MDen and Foster Park Publishing.

Images by David Turnley.