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Michigan's Jim Harbaugh Takes No. 1 Spot On ESPN List


As Michigan's Jim Harbaugh prepares for his seventh season as head coach of the Wolverines, many are wondering when - or if - the man once dubbed the 'Savior' of Michigan can live up to the hype that surrounded his hiring.

At this point in his coaching tenure, Harbaugh's name often appears on many coaching lists and not necessarily for the best reasons. Just recently, Dennis Dodd, a national college football writer for CBS Sports, placed Harbaugh at No. 6 overall on the coaching hot seat heading into the 2021 season. Here's what Dodd had to say about Harbaugh's placement on the list.

"We don't have to tell you. Michigan sent the message loud and clear: Win now. The 2-4 mark in 2020 tied for the worst of Harbaugh's career. Before the season, he was the only Power Five coach with less than two years on his contract, making it difficult to recruit. The result? An incentive-laded deal through 2025, the only factor that keeps Harbaugh from a 5. After six years of being slapped around by Ohio State, the burden is on Harbaugh, who still hasn't so much as won a division as an FBS coach. The extension was signed in time to land a class that included five top 100 players. Now the task is developing a difference-making QB and beating OSU, neither of which Harbaugh has been able to accomplish yet. If he does, it would be one of the greatest rallies of Captain Comeback's career."

While being on a coaching hot seat list is far from ideal, Harbaugh also made another list recently - this time taking the No. 1 spot. ESPN's Adam Rittenberg recently put together a list that ranked active coaches who were previously college players. According to Rittenberg, Harbaugh it doesn't get any better than Jim Harbaugh.

Here's what Rittenberg had to say about Harbaugh's placement on the list.

1. Jim Harbaugh, Michigan Wolverines: Harbaugh retains the top spot after a decorated career as both a college and NFL quarterback. The son of college coach Jack Harbaugh finished third in Heisman Trophy voting in 1986, when he won Big Ten MVP and earned All-America honors. His career pass efficiency mark (149.6) led the NCAA for 12 years. A first-round pick of the Chicago Bears in 1987, Harbaugh played portions of 15 NFL seasons, reaching the Pro Bowl and earning AFC offensive player of the year honors with Indianapolis in 1995.

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