Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is right where he wants to be.
He flirted with the NFL this past offseason, even interviewing for the Vikings head coaching vacancy, but eventually returned to Ann Arbor with a new deal. Harbaugh inked a five-year, $36.7 million extension that takes him through the 2026 season.
He stood at the podium Tuesday and explained why he entertained a return to the NFL, where he made his mark as 49ers head coach from 2011-14.
“I signed a seven-year deal and seven years was up,” Harbaugh said, via MLive. “That’s what precipitated it. Seeing if that was something I wanted to do.”
But a return to the NFL didn’t feel right to the former Michigan quarterback, coming off the program’s most successful season since 1997. The Wolverines finished 12-2, falling to eventual national champion Georgia, 34-11, in the College Football Playoff Semifinal.
Harbaugh’s biggest accomplishment — on a snowy November day at the Big House — occurred when Michigan defeated its biggest rival, Ohio State, for the first time since 2011.
“I ultimately decided this is where I wanted to be,” Harbaugh said. “And really, [I have] a lot of gratitude for that.”
In his seventh season roaming the sidelines, Harbaugh’s offense found an identity behind the backfield duo of Hassan Haskins and Blake Corum. Haskins is off to the NFL, but Corum returns for his junior season after rushing for 952 yards on 6.6 yards per carry and 11 touchdowns this past season.
Corum figures to be the focal point of the offense once more, as Harbaugh and Michigan look to win the biggest prize in the business.
“We could win college football’s greatest trophy; we could win the national championship,” Harbaugh said. “That’s plenty good. It would be great to win a Super Bowl, but [I’m] completely focused on winning a national championship.”
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