Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has agreed to a new five-year contract that runs through the 2026 season, the school announced Wednesday. The deal gives Harbaugh a one-year extension with new terms from the contract he signed last January.
The renewed commitment comes exactly two weeks after Harbaugh's highly publicized Feb. 2 interview with the Minnesota Vikings on national signing day. Following the news that he did not receive an offer, Harbaugh returned to Ann Arbor where he immediately met with the team, according to a school spokesman, and began making hires for the openings on his staff.
Harbaugh, a former star quarterback at Michigan, had to replace both coordinators after offensive coordinator Josh Gattis took the same position with the Miami Hurricanes, and the Baltimore Ravens hired defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald. Harbaugh has since hired defensive coordinator Jesse Minter from Vanderbilt and promoted three assistants while turning over offensive playcalling responsibilities to quarterbacks coach Matt Weiss and offensive line coach Sherrone Moore.
"I love Michigan Football, the University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor community," Harbaugh said in a prepared statement. "My family and I are excited to continue leading this football program, and we are thankful for the support that our athletic department and university administration have demonstrated toward the team. I appreciate all that our players, coaches and staff are doing to excel on and off the football field. My enthusiasm for tomorrow, the day after and every day following is as high as ever, and we are ready to get on the practice field and start preparations for the 2022 season. Go Blue!"
Last fall, Harbaugh led Michigan to the program's first Big Ten title since 2004 with a 42-3 victory over No. 12 Iowa at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Wolverines made their first appearance in the College Football Playoff, losing to eventual national champion Georgia in the Orange Bowl. U-M finished the year ranked No. 3 in the final polls, its highest finish since 1997.
It was a remarkable turnaround from Michigan's 2-4 record in 2020, by far Harbaugh's worst season at his alma mater. The Wolverines' final three games were canceled because of COVID-19 concerns, and questions swirled about Harbaugh's job status. Michigan announced a revised contract for its head coach in January 2021. It slashed his salary by about $4 million and extended the deal through 2025. Harbaugh later announced he would donate his bonuses, which totaled $2 million, to athletic department employees who had taken pay cuts because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Michigan did not immediately provide the contract or terms of the new deal.
Michigan in 2021 won 12 games for just the third time, matching the school record for total wins of the 1905 and 1997 teams. The Wolverines won the Big Ten East Division title with a 42-27 victory over No. 2 Ohio State to finish the regular season with an 8-1 conference mark. It was Harbaugh's first win against the rival Buckeyes.
"Jim has done a great job coaching and developing the young men in our football program," Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel said in the statement. "Last season, Jim along with the staff and players delivered a memorable season that will remain with all of us for a long time. As coach said, this is just the beginning.
"Academically, our program has been one of the best in the Big Ten and among the leaders across the country. We have graduated our players and they have been young men of great character who have done the right things. I have the utmost confidence in the direction of the program under Jim's leadership."