Current position: San Francisco 49ers head coach
Salary: $5,000,000 per year
Head coaching experience: 43-16 at San Francisco 49ers (2011-present), 29-21 at Stanford (2007-2010), 29-6 at University of San Diego (2004-2006), 101-43 overall
History: Jim was born in Toledo, grew up in Ann Arbor while his father was an assistant at Michigan, and graduated high school in Palo Alto, CA. He then came back to Michigan as a quarterback, started for his final three seasons, was named Big Ten Player of the Year as a senior, and was drafted in the 1st round of the NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears. He became a Pro Bowl quarterback with the Indianapolis Colts in 1995. When his career was finished, he coached quarterbacks at Western Kentucky and for the Oakland Raiders before getting the head coaching job at the University of San Diego, where he went 11-1 in each of his last two seasons. He proceeded to improve a moribund Stanford football program from 4-8 in his first year to 12-1 in his final year there. That turned into being hired by the 49ers, for whom he has reached the Super Bowl and two other NFC Championship games. They are 7-5 so far this season, but there are rumblings of discontent from the front office and ownership.
My thoughts: Harbaugh is as intense of a coach as they come, and that's not always the way to go about dealing with NFL players. Frankly, it rubs people the wrong way - at all levels - but millionaires don't like to be treated like college kids. On the flip side, college kids are playing for the love of the game or with a desire to make it to the next level, so they can handle a little more in-your-face intensity. Harbaugh is a proven winner as a player, a college coach, and an NFL coach, and Michigan would be in excellent hands with him. He recruited well at Stanford, and he would be recruiting the same types of players at Michigan - high character, smart athletes who are hard-nosed and disciplined. Furthermore, Harbaugh would have a full complement of returning linemen, tight ends, and running backs as a coach who places a premium on running the ball. The defense is solid, too. The only huge question mark is at quarterback.
Likelihood of coming to Michigan: Some outlets are reporting that it is likely, and some are reporting that it is unlikely. Rivals, on the one hand, is keeping fans' hopes up, but they are somewhat notorious for sending out positive vibes to keep readers happy. NFL people are saying he wants to stay in the NFL. I really have no idea whether he'll come back to Ann Arbor or not, but money would not be an issue (numbers like $8,000,000 per year have been thrown around), he doesn't seem likely to stay in San Francisco, and other potential destinations right now include the moribund Raiders and Jets franchises.
My wish list:
1. Jim Harbaugh
2. Bob Stoops
3. Dan Mullen
4. Les Miles
5. Greg Schiano
6. Tom Herman
7. Pat Narduzzi
8. Mike Shanahan