Jim Harbaugh of Michigan Is Interested in Being Signed by the Chargers and Raiders?
The NFL world has taken notice of Jim Harbaugh’s recent national championship victory at Michigan as teams consider selecting him as their next head coach. Ian Rapaport of NFL Network reports that the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders are interested in speaking with Harbaugh regarding their open coaching positions.
But Michigan still wants to hang onto Harbaugh, as the team is still offering the quarterback a $125 million, 10-year contract. Since joining Michigan in 2015, Harbaugh has guided the team to a 40-3 record and three College Football Playoff berths in the last three years. Harbaugh was a Michigan player from 1983 to 1986.
In recent years, Harbaugh has dabbled in the NFL, most notably with the Minnesota Vikings and Denver Broncos. Before going back to coach his alma mater, the 60-year-old spent four seasons as the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers from 2011 to 2014. With the 49ers, he appeared in three postseason games and finished with a 44-19-1 record.
After a dismal 5-12 campaign, the Chargers are looking to replace Brandon Staley, and the Raiders (8-9) will be led by their third full-time head coach in four years.
A few players from Las Vegas, such as All-Pro pass rusher Maxx Crosby, have already expressed their support for interim head coach Antonio Pierce to be hired on a full-time basis after Pierce finished 5–4 in nine games following Josh McDaniels’ firing.
Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh’s NFL return gains traction after meeting set with Chargers
Could Jim Harbaugh be off to southern California after leading Michigan to a National Championship?
The University of Michigan may be Jim Harbaugh‘s alma mater, but before he returned to Ann Arbor in 2015 to coach the Wolverines, Harbaugh had previously done all of his coaching on the west coast. Now, less than a week after leading the Michigan Wolverines to their first National Championship since 1997, Jim Harbaugh now seems to have his sights set on an NFL return… and potentially a return to California.
“Sources say it’s believed the Chargers will speak next week with Harbaugh, who has indicated to associates there’s a real possibility he could leave the University of Michigan to become Los Angeles’ head coach,” according to Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.
Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL Network report that “sources say it’s believed the Chargers will speak with Harbaugh next week. Harbaugh has indicated to associates there’s a real possibility he could leave the University of Michigan to become Los Angeles’ head coach.”
At the University of San Diego, where he led the Toreros to consecutive Pioneer Football League championships in 2005 and 2006, Jim Harbaugh was given his first head coaching opportunity. After that, Harbaugh headed north to Stanford, where he guided the Cardinals to their first winning season since 1992 in 2010, culminating in an Orange Bowl triumph over Virginia Tech. Then Harbaugh was off to the NFL, where he led the San Francisco 49ers to a Super Bowl appearance in his second season. As the 49ers’ head coach, he had a 44-19-1 record in four years.
It makes sense that Harbaugh would choose Los Angeles as his next destination, and there are many reasons to be drawn to the Chargers position. Harbaugh would already have his franchise quarterback in Justin Herbert. The potential attraction of playing in Southern California could aid in attracting prominent free agents, particularly if Harbaugh can swiftly improve the Chargers’ situation. With just one Super Bowl appearance in the team’s history, Harbaugh would instantly become a Chargers legend if he led the team to the promised land. Who knows, maybe his arrival and impending success would also help the Chargers gain a little more support from the LA community.
It’s far from certain that the Chargers have their man, as Michigan isn’t going to go down without a fight and it’s very possible that every NFL team with a head coaching vacancy would try to make Harbaugh an offer he couldn’t refuse.