Jim Harbaugh said two weeks ago that he expected to remain the head coach at the University of Michigan, and he's now stuck to his word, even with a few NFL franchises expressing interest in prying him away.
Michigan president Santa Ono tweeted that Harbaugh called him and "shared with me the great news that he is going to remain as the Head Coach of the Michigan Wolverines."
Ono said he shared the news with Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel, whose job just got a bit easier with this development.
Harbaugh confirmed the news in a tweet via the school, saying: "I love the relationships that I have at Michigan -- coaches, staff, families, administration, President Santa Ono and especially the players and their families. My heart is at the University of Michigan. I once heard a wise man say, 'Don't try to out-happy happy.' Go Blue!"
That now removes one big name from the NFL offseason coaching pool.
The 59-year-old Harbaugh was believed to be one of the Denver Broncos' prime candidates for their head-coaching vacancy, and the Carolina Panthers had met with Harbaugh in person over their current opening. He also had ties to other jobs, such as that of the Indianapolis Colts, for whom he played quarterback in the 1990s.
Harbaugh has been at Michigan since 2015, accruing a record of 74-25 in Ann Arbor and leading the Wolverines to the College Football Playoffs this past season. In January 2021, he signed a lucrative four-year contract extension through the 2025 season. That didn't stop Harbaugh from flirting with the Minnesota Vikings about their head-coaching position last offseason before he returned to college and Minnesota pivoted to hiring Kevin O'Connell.
But there's now a question if Harbaugh will ever return to the NFL coaching ranks.
He spent four years as the 49ers' head coach from 2011 to 2014, leading the team to three NFC Championship Game appearances and losing Super Bowl XLVII to the Ravens, coached by his brother, Jim. His record of 44-19-1 gives Harbaugh a win percentage of .695, which puts him behind only one active coach (Green Bay's Matt LaFleur at .712) and four Pro Football Hall of Fame coaches (Guy Chamberlin, John Madden, Vince Lombardi and George Allen) on the all-time list.
Harbaugh might be willing to listen to future offers and might always have an NFL team or two interested every January. But this is now two years in a row in which he made overtures to NFL teams about vacancies before turning around and heading back to Michigan, where he first played and now is coaching.
At least for one more year, you can stop connecting Harbaugh to open NFL jobs.