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Michigan’s Harbaugh denies report he’s seeking NFL job

Field Level Media

October 23, 2019 at 8:20 pm.

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh emailed a letter to parents of current and committed players to dispute talk that he wants to leave his alma mater and return to the NFL.

The Michigan Insider reported the distribution of the letter, which was confirmed by ESPN and MLive.

“I am reaching out to let you know that the recent claims that I am ‘pursuing an exit strategy’ are total crap,” Harbaugh wrote in the letter, according to reports. “It’s an annual strategy driven by our enemies to cause disruption to our program and to negatively recruit.”

A report on Tuesday by FootballScoop, citing unidentified sources, said Harbaugh was planning an exit from Michigan, with his representatives scouring potential NFL landing spots.

“By the way, I don’t even have an ‘agent or representative,'” he wrote.

Harbaugh is in the fifth year of a seven-year contract, and his annual salary of $7.5 million trails only Clemson’s Dabo Swinney and Alabama’s Nick Saban, according to USA Today’s coaching salary database.

The Wolverines are 5-2 this season and 43-16 under Harbaugh.

If Harbaugh leaves Michigan, he implies in the letter it won’t be his decision.

“I am committed to your sons, their education and to their development as football players and people,” Harbaugh continued in the letter. “Please excuse the informality of this letter but I felt that it was important to get this out to you as quickly as possible.”

On Saturday, No. 19 Michigan will host No. 8 Notre Dame (5-1) in one of the biggest games of Harbaugh’s tenure.

Any negative recruiting strategies haven’t had too much of an impact on the Wolverines. In 2019, Michigan had the nation’s No. 8 recruiting class — and the tops in the Big Ten — according to the 247Sports composite. The 2020 class is ranked No. 9, with rival Ohio State No. 3.