Will Jim Harbaugh be Michigan’s coach when Wolverines visit Penn State in 2023?

The petals from the Rose Bowl celebration are barely wilted, but it is never too early to start looking forward to Penn State’s 2023 season. And while the season will kick things off Labor Day weekend at home in a highly anticipated revival of a former regional rivalry with West Virginia, it is the home clash with Michigan that will be the spotlight game on the home schedule for Penn State next fall. The Wolverines are coming off back-to-back Big Ten championships and have become the team Penn State knows it must beat in order to have a shot at the Big Ten title (yes, Ohio State is still that team too). But as Penn State and Michigan now officially enter the offseason as their respective bowl seasons have ended, Michigan is once again seeing its head coach thrown in the middle of the NFL coaching carousel rumor mill.

Jim Harbaugh, who has previous head coaching experience with the San Francisco 49ers, is as much a Michigan man as you will find, and it is entirely possible he remains Michigan’s head coach for a long time. But despite his public procloamations he intends to remain in Ann Arbor at any given opportunity to say so, Harbaugh’s name continues to be a hot one in the media coverage of the NFL coaching carousel. Most recently, Harbaugh’s name has come up in the Carolina Panthers search as the Panthers look for a replacement for Matt Rhule, who was fired by Carolina and has since been hired by Nebraska.

To what depth that conversation went is anyone’s guess and only Panthers owner David Tepper and Harbaugh know for sure the right answer. And as reported, it was not an actual interview. That could mean a couple of things. Either it was a quick conversation gauging interest or the job is Harbaugh’s if he wants it and no interview is really required.

It feels as though we have gone through this cycle before, and it is one that is similar to what Penn State fans have seen with James Franklin at times. It has been so frequent that it almost feel as though it is required every football offseason to bring Harbaugh’s name up, especially with him continuing to succeed with Michigan. And unlike most college coaches, Harbaugh has an NFL pedigree and a solid track record to back it up.

There is a long way to go until Penn State hosts Michigan on Nov. 11. Will Harbaugh be the head coach of the Wolverines? A mere guess and hunch from this particular writer says yes, he will. But if the Michigan job does happen to open up, it will be wildly fascinating to see how it might be filled.


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Story originally appeared on Nittany Lions Wire