Let me start this post off by saying that I’ve been incredibly impressed with what Jim Harbaugh has done as the head coach at Stanford. I mean, how could you not be? That said, some of the reports flying around about his future prospects are almost absurd.
After meeting with the San Francisco 49ers for five hours on Wednesday, a story has surfaced claiming that the Miami Dolphins are willing to make Harbaugh the highest-paid coach in the NFL. That would mean they are willing to pay him more than $7 million annually. Read that again.
The Dolphins report came on the heels of a story claiming that Harbaugh’s alma mater, Michigan, had offered him $5.2 million per year and he rejected it.
Again, I like Harbaugh as a coach, I like the way his teams play and what he’s done at Stanford has been pretty incredible. That said, he’s only been a head coach for seven years and four of that was at the FCS level. He was an assistant with the Oakland Raiders for two years before that. So he’s only been a coach for nine years and has no experience as an NFL head coach, and the Dolphins are willing to pay him more than every other coach in the league? That just seems a little ridiculous.
Harbaugh did a nice job at the University of San Diego, posting a 29-6 record in three seasons. At Stanford his first two years were tough (4-8 in 2007, and 5-7 in 2008). But last year with Andrew Luck at the helm of his team and Toby Gerhart having an incredible season, the Cardinal went 8-5. This year Stanford finished 12-1, with its only loss coming at the hands of an undefeated Oregon team.
So, yes, that’s a fantastic turnaround and Harbaugh has done wonders in Palo Alto. But without Andrew Luck, the presumptive No. 1 pick in the 2011 NFL draft, his teams at Stanford were pretty awful.
His overall record as a head coach is 58-27, which is pretty dang good, but at a level where he’s never won a game is he really worth $7 million a year?
It just seems to me that he’s the hot guy right now and someone will pay him far more than he’s worth and possibly regret it later.