Los Angeles Chargers Signing Michigan Head Coach Jim Harbaugh to 5-Year Deal

The Los Angeles Chargers have their head coach. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the team is wrapping up a five-year deal with Michigan coach and 2023 National Champion Jim Harbaugh to be their next head coach.

Harbaugh has enjoyed enormous success everywhere he has gone. He initially rose to prominence resurrecting a long-dormant Stanford team in the college ranks, culminating in a 12-1 season in 2010. That record earned the Cardinals a fourth-place finish in the AP Poll, the school's best final ranking since 1970.

That success bought Harbaugh an opportunity with the San Francisco 49ers in 2011. Over four years with the team, he compiled an impressive .695 winning percentage and even earned a Super Bowl berth following the 2012 season.

Following the 2014 season, Harbaugh seized a chance to return to the NCAA to coach Michigan, his alma mater. After years of close calls and late-season disappointments, the Wolverines finally broke through this year, bringing Michigan a 15-0 undefeated season and the program's first national title since 1997.

Harbaugh is an enormous get for the Chargers. Arguably the hottest coach on the market, he'll bring instant relevance and credibility to an organization lacking in both. That being said, the Chargers may have a steeper climb to contention than many suspect. Their defense hasn't ranked better than 21st in points allowed since the days of Philip Rivers, and their offense fell all the way to 21st in points scored in 2022 despite the presence of quarterback Justin Herbert, wide receiver Keenan Allen, and running back Austin Ekeler.

Perhaps most alarmingly, the Chargers currently sit nearly $46 million over the 2024 salary cap, meaning Harbaugh will have very limited maneuverability this offseason to remake the roster as he sees fit. Rebuilding the Chargers may be a multiyear project.

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