Everyone in “Go Blue” nation—and the rest of the nation, for that matter—knew it was coming. But Tuesday, Michigan went ahead and made it official anyways: Jim Harbaugh is the Wolverines’ new football coach.
Harbaugh signed a seven-year deal, interim athletic director Jim Hackett announced at the introductory press conference.
Michigan needed to hit a home run with this football hire and it did in Harbaugh. Bereft of a vibrant personality to appeal to recruits, the Wolverines have been outmanned by rivals Ohio State and Michigan State.
With Harbaugh now in the fold, Michigan can compete with the Buckeyes’ Urban Meyer and the Spartans Mark Dantonio.
Harbaugh, who the Bears selected in the first round of the 1987 draft, played quarterback at Michigan from 1983-1986. As a senior in 1986, Harbaugh led the Wolverines to the Rose Bowl and finished third in Heisman voting.
His ties to the university will certainly help him recruit.
But Harbaugh is also a proven talent developer at the college level. He coached Colts quarterback Andrew Luck at Stanford and went 12-1 with the Cardinal in his final season in 2010. This after going 4-8 in 2007, his first season in Palo Alto.