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Jim Harbaugh Addresses NFL Rumors, Says He Expects to Return to Michigan in 2023

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 5, 2023

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 31:  Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh runs onto the field before the VRBO Fiesta Bowl college football national championship semifinal game between the Michigan Wolverines and the TCU Horned Frogs on December 31, 2022 at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Kevin Abele/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh indicated his plans are to remain in his current position despite rumors about a move to the NFL:

Michigan Football @UMichFootball

A Michigan Man through and through.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoBlue?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GoBlue</a> <a href="https://t.co/ZLZiCSw8AG">pic.twitter.com/ZLZiCSw8AG</a>

"While no one knows what the future holds, I expect that I will be enthusiastically coaching Michigan in 2023," Harbaugh said in the statement.

The Athletic reported Harbaugh has already spoken to Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper about their opening at head coach, while multiple sources said they expect the coach to leave for the NFL if given the opportunity.

"I think it is a done deal if he gets an offer," one source told The Athletic.

The Denver Broncos have also reached out to Harbaugh to discuss their opening, per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.

The 59-year-old spent four years as an NFL coach with the San Francisco 49ers, accumulating a 44-19-1 regular-season record plus a trip to the Super Bowl. He joined Michigan in 2015 and has gone 74-25 in eight years at his alma mater.

The Wolverines have won the Big Ten title with a trip to the College Football Playoff in each of the last two years, although both seasons ended with a loss in the national semifinals.

Harbaugh notably considered leaving Michigan last offseason while showing interest in the Minnesota Vikings opening, although he later decided to remain at the college level.

"There was a pull to the NFL because I got that close to the Super Bowl, but this was the time [to try and return]," the coach told Mitch Albom of the Detroit Free Press in February. "And this is the last time. Now let's go chase college football's greatest prize."

The latest statement indicates Harbaugh intends to remain with the Wolverines, although the widespread interest at the NFL level might still be enough to change his mind.