Jim Harbaugh returns to Los Angeles Chargers as head coach

Harbaugh played quarterback for Los Angeles Chargers during 1999 and 2000 seasons

Michigan Wolverines ex-head coach Jim Harbaugh celebrates after beating the Washington Huskies in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, US on January 8, 2024. — Reuters
Michigan Wolverines ex-head coach Jim Harbaugh celebrates after beating the Washington Huskies in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, US on January 8, 2024. — Reuters

Jim Harbaugh is leaving the national champion, the Michigan Wolverines, to coach the National Football League (NFL)’s Los Angeles Chargers for five years, the team announced Wednesday.

Harbaugh played quarterback at the University of Michigan, finishing his career as one of the most efficient passers in college football history, ESPN reported.

He also played quarterback for the Chargers during the 1999 and 2000 seasons and spent the past nine years at his alma mater as head football coach for the University of Michigan.

Harbaugh was considered among the most desirable candidates in this coaching cycle because of his success at both the college and professional levels.

Since his head-coaching career began in 2006 at the University of San Diego, Harbaugh has had success at Stanford and Michigan, and in the NFL with the San Francisco 49ers.

Harbaugh said: “When I played for the Chargers, the Spanos family could not have been more gracious or more welcoming. Being back here feels like home, and it’s great to see that those things haven’t changed.

“The only job you start at the top is digging a hole, so we know we’ve got to earn our way. Be better today than yesterday. Be better tomorrow than today.”

Meanwhile, overwhelmed with excitement, Chargers’ owner Dean Spanos said: “The son of a coach, brother of a coach and father of a coach who himself was coached by names like (Bo) Schembechler and (Mike ) Ditka, for the past two decades Jim has led hundreds of men to success everywhere he’s been — as their coach.

“And today, Jim Harbaugh returns to the Chargers, this time as our coach. Who has it better than us?”

Spanos cited the rallying cry that Harbaugh leaned on during this season at Michigan when he would yell, “Who’s got it better than us?” to players. It’s a phrase he got from his father, Jack, as a reminder to be grateful.

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