Harbaugh: Report of rescinded contract extension inaccurate

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said Monday that a report that the university had rescinded a contract extension offer in recent weeks was not accurate.

Harbaugh is in the second year of a five-year deal with the Wolverines. Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel told ESPN's Adam Rittenberg on Oct. 10 that the school hoped to have an extension for the head coach soon. That process was put on hold a week later after Michigan learned that the NCAA was investigating an alleged yearslong cheating scheme, according to sources familiar with the situation.

The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday night that Michigan had rescinded its offer to Harbaugh.

"I wouldn't say that's accurate, no," Harbaugh said when asked Monday about the report.

A source told ESPN's Tom VanHaaren that Harbaugh was instructed not to sign the contract offer yet.

A university spokesman published a statement Sunday night stating that the school does not comment on employment contracts "until they are completed and fully executed."

Harbaugh declined to answer a question about the current nature of his relationship with Manuel and other university leaders.

"I can talk about the football game this Saturday," he said. "I can talk about the vibes in that preparation and where that stands today. It doesn't seem like you're interested in that. That's what I can talk about."

No. 2 Michigan (8-0) returns from an idle week Saturday with a home game against Purdue. Harbaugh said he is trying to model a "one-track mind" for his team amid ongoing speculation about the NCAA's investigation into claims that Michigan staff members paid several individuals to attend the games of future opponents and record the sidelines in an effort to help decode the teams' playcalling signals.

Stealing signs is not an NCAA rules violation. NCAA rules do prohibit any staff member from advance scouting an opponent in person during the regular season.

Harbaugh denied any knowledge of the alleged cheating in a statement published shortly after the allegations were made public. He said Monday that he wasn't able to discuss the allegations any further while the NCAA's investigation is ongoing.

"You just have to let it play out, cooperate with the investigation and watch how it plays out," Harbaugh said. "The speculation part, as I've said I've got too much of a one-track mind on coaching the team to engage on every piece of speculation."

Harbaugh said he did not know the timeframe in which the NCAA investigation could run its course. The program, which is on pace for a potential third consecutive trip to the College Football Playoff, has not yet received an official notice of allegations from the NCAA.

"[There is] stuff we just can't talk about," Harbaugh said. "I'd love to. I'm like you. I'm in all your positions, but we've got to let it play out."