COLLEGE FOOTBALL NEWS

Michigan signs Harbaugh to four-year extension

Field Level Media

January 08, 2021 at 10:26 pm.

Jim Harbaugh has signed a four-year contract extension with Michigan, the university announced on Friday.

The extension, with “revised financial terms,” goes into effect on Jan. 11 and will run through the 2025 season.

“I continue to believe that Jim is the right man to lead our program in pursuit of Big Ten and CFP championships,” Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel said in a statement. “Our program didn’t achieve at a level that anyone expected this year, but I know those setbacks will drive the coaches, players and staff moving forward.”

ESPN reported that the new contract will include a lower base salary and several performance incentives. Harbaugh had one year left on his first contract with Michigan, and was paid more than $8 million in 2020.

Michigan finished 2-4 in 2020 and failed to win a home game for the first time in program history. The Wolverines’ final three games were canceled due to COVID-19 issues within the program. Among the lost games was the annual rivalry game against Ohio State, which had been every year since 1918.

Harbaugh, a former Michigan quarterback, is 49-22 in six seasons at his alma mater and 34-16 in Big Ten play. The Wolverines won 10 games and logged top 15 finishes in three of his first four seasons at the helm, but have also lost four straight bowl games.

But Michigan has yet to beat conference heavyweight Ohio State (0-5) under Harbaugh, and the team is just 1-8 against top 10 opponents. Under Harbaugh, the Wolverines are just 3-3 against their other rival Michigan State.

In a released statement, Harbaugh thanked Michigan administration.

“My thanks to athletic director Warde Manuel for the trust that he has shown in allowing me to continue to coach the University of Michigan football team,” Harbaugh said. “Over the past few weeks, Warde and I had discussions that have been honest, open, insightful and constructive in moving our football program forward. Discussions that I look forward to continuing over the months and years ahead. We have a plan.

“There is work to be done and challenges to be addressed.”

Six assistant coaches have contracts that will expire on Sunday, ESPN reported. Last month, Michigan fired defensive coordinator Don Brown.

In the release, Michigan said Harbaugh was “in the process of evaluating and putting together his staff for the 2021 season.”