Jim Harbaugh expresses excitement about joining Chargers, pens goodbye to Michigan: ‘I’ll always be a loyal Wolverine’

Jim Harbaugh spent nine seasons coaching at his alma mater Michigan and led the Wolverines to a national championship in his final season there. Now, he is saying goodbye as he makes his return to the NFL.

The Chargers announced on Wednesday that they had hired Harbaugh to culminate their coaching search. Harbaugh will coach on a five-year deal as he returns to the NFL for the first time since the 49ers fired him at the end of the 2014 NFL season.

On Thursday, Harbaugh said goodbye to Michigan in a heartfelt statement as he prepared to resume his NFL journey.

“My love for Michigan, playing there and coming back to coach there, leaves a lasting impact,” Harbaugh wrote. “I’ll always be a loyal Wolverine.”

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Harbaugh went on to note that he has been able to create “strong personal connections” at each of his coaching stops. 

That was one of the reasons Harbaugh was drawn to the Chargers’ job. He already has a strong relationship with the Spanos family, as he outlined in his statement.

“When I played for the Chargers, the Spanos family could not have been more gracious or more welcoming,” Harbaugh said. “Being back here feels like home, and it’s great to see that those things haven’t changed.”

Harbaugh joining the Chargers was not much of a surprise. Beyond his connection to the franchise, Los Angeles was viewed as one of the most attractive job openings in the NFL. It has a well-built offense and a franchise-caliber quarterback in Justin Herbert. The Bolts just need to perform better on defense to become a potential contender in the AFC.

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Harbaugh isn’t taking that for granted in his second NFL head coaching stop. He wants to make sure that the Chargers come out, establish an identity, and find a way to continue improving as he implements his system in Los Angeles.

“The only job you start at the top is digging a hole, so we know we’ve got to earn our way,” he wrote. “Be better today than yesterday. Be better tomorrow than today. My priorities are faith, family, and football, and we are going to attack each with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind.”

Harbaugh believes that it won’t take too long for that to happen, especially with the way the Chargers are operating.

“This organization is putting in the work — investing capital, building infrastructure, and doing everything within its power to win,” he wrote.

“Great effort equals great results, and we’re just getting started.”


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