The odds of Jim Harbaugh becoming the next head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers are increasing by the day. The recently crowned national champion seems set on leaving Michigan to return to the NFL. The most likely team to lure him away: the Chargers.
Los Angeles interviewed Harbaugh for their head coaching opening on Monday, and there appears to be traction in the right direction. ESPN's Jeremy Fowler reported that the meeting between the two sides went well.
"The Chargers meeting as far as I've heard went well. They formally interviewed yesterday. The Chargers have not really been shy about their interest in [Harbaugh], it is real, it's legitimate. I believe Harbaugh has a mutual interest as well. The chance with that quarterback, Justin Herbert, to make something happen."- Jeremy Fowler, ESPN
Fowler added that the chances of Harbaugh returning to Michigan are "pretty small." The Wolverines had reportedly offered him a contract extension for 10 years and $125 million in late December. Recently, Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports reported that Michigan's offer to Harbaugh was a six-year deal for $11.5 million guaranteed per year plus performance-related bonuses.
Even though this would make Harbaugh the highest-paid coach in college football, it may pale in comparison to what he could make in the NFL.
Harbaugh is the most sought-after coach on the market and given his stature and resume, he could land a contract that pays him at a level similar to Sean Payton or Sean McVay who both make over $15 million annually.
This could give us an idea about where the negotiations are between Harbaugh and the Chargers. Not only are they trying to beat the Atlanta Falcons and the Las Vegas Raiders, who are also in Harbaugh sweepstakes, but they are also trying to keep Michigan away from convincing him to stay.
ESPN insider Dan Graziano also predicted that the Chargers will hire Jim Harbaugh as he is a fan of Justin Herbert, and is very interested in being in Los Angeles.
The Chargers will try to wrap this up as soon as possible so that they can start looking for a general manager. But this is the biggest domino to fall for what is going to be a busy offseason for the Chargers. Stay tuned.
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