Michigan AD Warde Manuel releases statement following Jim Harbaugh breaking news
On Wednesday, it was revealed that Jim Harbaugh had agreed to take up the position of head coach with the Los Angeles Chargers. Just moments ago, the University of Michigan's Athletic Director, Warde Manuel, issued a formal statement confirming Harbaugh's move to the NFL while expressing gratitude for his significant contributions to the university's football program.
Warde Manuel's Statement
Here is what Warde Manuel had to say in his statement regarding Jim Harbaugh leaving Michigan for the Los Angeles Chargers.
I want to thank Jim for everything he has done for our football program, athletic department and the University of Michigan over the past nine years. Every day, he has worked extremely hard to elevate the stature of Michigan across the world, with the goal of winning championships and developing young men on and off of the football field.
Jim did exactly what he sought to do at Michigan. Build our program to consistently win Big Ten championships and compete for national championships, culminating with a record, three straight outright conference titles and the national championship this year. He did the same off the field by graduating his players and providing life experiences through mentorships, internships, and team trips around the globe.
We have been discussing a new contract that would make Jim the highest-paid coach in college football. In the end, he wanted to explore and ultimately decided to pursue a return to coaching in the NFL. We can't thank Jim enough for all that he has done for our student athletes, staff, and Michigan football. He will always be a huge part of our rich history, and will be remembered as an all-time great wolverine, as both a championship player and coach.
Jim has always been extremely upfront with his communication regarding NFL opportunities and has been helpful with his transition and leadership. We had a great conversation tonight when he informed me of this decision to return to the NFL and offered his assistance in helping identify the needs for the program moving forward.
We are working quickly to hire the next head coach for the program and will do everything possible to keep this current staff and team together.
We appreciate Jim's dedication and passion. for Michigan, the university and Ann Arbor and I wish Jim and the entire Harbaugh family much success with the Los Angeles Chargers.
TL;DR (too long didn't read)
- Acknowledgment of Harbaugh's Contributions: Warde Manuel expressed gratitude for Jim Harbaugh's extensive work over the past nine years, highlighting his efforts in elevating the stature of Michigan's football program and its global recognition.
- Harbaugh's Achievements: Manuel noted Harbaugh's success in achieving the program's goals, including winning Big Ten championships, a national championship, and contributing to player development both on and off the field.
- Transition and Future Plans: While discussing a potential contract to make Harbaugh the highest-paid coach in college football, Manuel acknowledged Harbaugh's decision to return to the NFL. He also mentioned the ongoing process to hire a new head coach and the intention to maintain the current team and staff.
Warde Manuel's statement reflects a deep appreciation for Jim Harbaugh's substantial impact on the University of Michigan's football program. He commends Harbaugh's achievements in both sporting success and player development, while understanding his decision to pursue NFL opportunities. Despite Harbaugh's departure, Manuel emphasizes a commitment to preserving the team's continuity and swiftly appointing a new head coach to lead Michigan's esteemed football legacy forward.