Jim Harbaugh isn’t addressing the rumors that he will be Michigan’s coach next season, but the college football program’s birthday message to the San Francisco 49ers head coach may have blown his cover.
Harbaugh still won’t respond to the widespread reports that the 49ers plan to fire him after the season ends or the reports that he has a $48 million standing offer to return to his alma mater at the University of Michigan.
But Michigan officials may have given something away on Tuesday when they tweeted Jim Harbaugh a birthday message, one many think is aimed at bringing him over to become the next coach.
— Michigan Football (@umichfootball) December 23, 2014
Jim Harbaugh said he’s just focusing on his team’s season finale against the Arizona Cardinals, and said he hasn’t “participated in any of the speculation, the unnamed sources, the rumors” about where he will be coaching next season.
But 49ers officials have confirmed that Michigan officials have indeed reached out about Harbaugh.
“I think the University of Michigan, in reaching out, did handle it correctly,” General manager Trent Baalke said Monday on 95.7 The Game. “As I look at it, guys, it’s very simple: He’s the head football coach of the San Francisco 49ers…”
“Our focus is on this last game. We’ll address next season after this season is over, and not until then. We’ll deal with this at the end of the season. That’s when we’ll deal with it.”
Whether he ends up in San Francisco or not, Jim Harbaugh is almost assuredly done in San Francisco. For several weeks, sources close to the organization say that Harbaugh’s brash manner and controlling ways over players wore thin and that his locker room support had fallen apart.
Fox Sports insider Jay Glazer reported this week that the 49ers are expected to cut ties with Jim Harbaugh within 24 to 48 hours of the regular season ending.
But Jim Harbaugh may have other landing spots. While the University of Michigan appears to the be frontrunner, he has also been connected to expected openings with the Oakland Raiders and New York Jets.