The Michigan Football program announced on Friday that the search firm Korn Ferry has been hired to facilitate the Wolverines’ coaching search. Jed Hughes, current vice president of Korn Ferry and former-Michigan assistant, has done previous search work for the University; including the hiring of Dave Brandon as athletic director. Most recently, the Detroit Pistons used the search firm that led to the hiring of Stan Van Gundy. The University released a statement saying that Korn Ferry is narrowing the list of applicants to identify the best possible candidates.
With that being said, there is one candidate that clearly sticks out as the “best”; Jim Harbaugh. Regardless of the fact that both parties have shied away from the notion of a possible homecoming, it is now Harbaugh’s job to lose. The timing couldn’t be any more perfect for the former Wolverine to leave the NFL and come back to Ann Arbor.
It took a lot to convince Van Gundy to come to Detroit, in fact, he essentially has total control of the team. The bottom line is that Korn Ferry pulled every single string possible to bring a big-time name to a franchise that was on the decline. There is a very similar situation waiting to happen between Harbaugh and the University of Michigan.
The isportsweb Harbaugh Meter has now climbed to 70%.
However, as magical as a Harbaugh-homecoming would be, there must be a backup plan. So, who’s Plan B?
Les Miles is the obvious Plan-B front-runner. Although interim athletic director Jim Hackett is persistent on moving away from the whole “Michigan-man” label, Miles’ ties to the University still hold a significant value. He’s experienced great levels of success as the head coach at LSU and it may be Miles’ time to escape from the SEC.
If Michigan loses out on Harbaugh, it would still be a victory to pluck Miles away from LSU. He’s a great coach, a great leader and would make an absolute killing on the recruiting trails.
Next on the list is Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops. Stoops’ career has been nothing short of legendary, winning 80% of his games in the 16 seasons he’s spent as the Sooners head coach. He’s not necessarily under any pressure in Oklahoma, but sometimes coaches seek after a new challenge. If there’s a job that could pull Stoops away from his current position, it would be the current opening at Michigan.
If one of these three coaches end up in Ann Arbor, the position will remain vacant for the next few weeks. Makes sure to check out our Michigan Football team page for updates as the search continues.
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