Jim Harbaugh, Michigan Agree to New 5-Year Contract Through 2026 Season

Adam WellsFebruary 16, 2022

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 31: Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh during the Capital One Orange Bowl game between the Georgia Bulldogs and the Michigan Wolverines on December 31, 2021 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fl.  (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After flirting with a return to the NFL last month, Michigan has rewarded head football coach Jim Harbaugh with a new contract. 

The school announced on Wednesday that Harbaugh agreed to a five-year deal that runs through the 2026 season and alters the terms of his previous extension that was signed in January 2021. 

Brett McMurphy @Brett_McMurphy

Jim Harbaugh’s new 5-year contract at Michigan worth $36.6 million, averaging $7.336 million per year

Harbaugh issued a statement in the announcement: 

"I love Michigan Football, the University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor community. My family and I are excited to continue leading this football program, and we are thankful for the support that our athletic department and university administration have demonstrated toward the team. I appreciate all that our players, coaches and staff are doing to excel on and off the football field. My enthusiasm for tomorrow, the day after and every day following is as high as ever, and we are ready to get on the practice field and start preparations for the 2022 season. Go Blue!"

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reported in January that Harbaugh was "watching and waiting to see whether a team with a reasonable ownership and general manager situation" showed interest in hiring him back to the NFL. 

Harbaugh spoke with the Minnesota Vikings about their vacancy, but ESPN's Courtney Cronin reported he "operated under the assumption that the job was his and prepared for the interview as such."

Courtney Cronin @CourtneyRCronin

nature of what the in-person meeting was all about. The Vikings brought Harbaugh into Minnesota to interview, just like they did with Pat Graham on Tues. Followed the same format and everything.

Speaking to Mitch Albom of the Detroit Free Press, Harbaugh said he wanted to explore the NFL again because "there was a tugging at me that I was once that close to a Super Bowl and I didn’t get it."

Harbaugh added he told Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel in a phone call after talking to the Vikings that "this will not be a reoccurring theme every year. This was a one-time thing."

Michigan hired Harbaugh as its head coach on Dec. 30, 2014. The 58-year-old had just wrapped up a successful four-year run with the San Francisco 49ers from 2011-14 in which he led them to three consecutive NFC Championship games and an appearance in Super Bowl 48. 

In seven seasons with the Wolverines, Harbaugh has a 61-24 record with six bowl game appearances. He is coming off his most successful campaign with a 12-2 record, Big Ten championship and an appearance in the College Football Playoff.