One thing is clear when it comes to Michigan’s pursuit of Jim Harbaugh; the Wolverines -- led by interim athletic director Jim Hackett -- were ready and willing to spend money to make it happen.
Harbaugh reportedly signed on to become Michigan’s coach just hours after arriving in Ann Arbor Monday night. While details of the deal haven’t been released just yet, a reported six year, $48 million contract was leaked by several sources in the weeks leading up to the announcement.
But Michigan had some company when it comes to offering a high priced, very lucrative contract.
The Oakland Raiders reportedly targeted Harbaugh as its No. 1 candidate for the vacant coaching position as well. Appearing on FOX Sports 1’s main program FOX Sports Live, NFL insider Mike Garafolo dropped some very telling insight on the Raiders’ push for Harbaugh.
“Well let’s talk about the move (the Raiders) tried to make first -- Jim Harbaugh went to Michigan,” Garafolo said. “The Raiders were interested. Our Alex Marvez said they made a run at him. You want to know how good of a run? They offered more money than Michigan.
“Jim Harbaugh left money on the table to go to Michigan. The Raiders were willing to make him what the San Francisco 49ers were not willing to make him and that is the equivalent of a Super Bowl winning coach.
“Trust me when I tell you, according to a well placed source, Jim Harbaugh left money on the table to not go to the Raiders and to go to Michigan.”
Without exact figures to go with the report of a potentially record-breaking contract offer to Harbaugh from Oakland, the move signifies how emotional a decision this was for Harbaugh as opposed to strictly financially.
Harbaugh is expected to be introduced as Michigan’s coach in a press conference Tuesday at noon in Ann Arbor.