Report: Stephen Ross would be ‘tempted’ to hire Jim Harbaugh if he were to leave Michigan

Jim Harbaugh Michigan

A new report indicates that the Miami Dolphins might be interested in hiring current University of Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh if the chance presents itself.

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports pointed out that Harbaugh is “drawing interest” from several NFL teams.

“University of Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is drawing interest from several NFL teams, and while some close to him maintain he will not leave Ann Arbor, he will not have difficulty getting an audience with owners should the right opportunity arise,” La Canfora wrote.

One of the chief reasons why the Dolphins might be a candidate to hire Harbaugh, according to La Canfora, is team owner Stephen Ross. He is reportedly a “huge” fan of Harbaugh.

“Harbaugh also has a huge fan in Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, who is also a Michigan alumnus and one of the school’s biggest boosters,” La Canfora wrote. “His belief in Harbaugh is well known, he has wanted to hire him in the past, and if Harbaugh did leave Ann Arbor, league sources indicated he would be tempted to lure the former quarterback as well. Numerous league sources said Harbaugh’s name came up within the Dolphins organization midseason when the team was enduring a seven-game losing streak, and although it rallied to win seven in a row, the team was pummeled by the [Tennessee] Titans last week to end any playoff hope.

“Ross has long coveted Harbaugh and, at this stage of his life with a succession plan for ownership already in place, passing on Harbaugh might be difficult.”

Harbaugh has past experience as an NFL head coach, serving in that role with the San Francisco 49ers in the early 2010s. During that time, he compiled a record of 44-19-1 and led the 49ers to an NFC championship in his second season.

From there, Harbaugh moved on to coach at the University of Michigan. In seven seasons there, he has a record of 61-24 and led his team this season to a berth in the College Football Playoff.

The current Dolphins head coach, Brian Flores, has made efforts to rebuild the franchise over the past three seasons, putting together a 23-25 overall record during that span. On Sunday, the team will close out its season after coming up short for a playoff bid.

Flores doesn’t appear to be in danger of losing his job right now, though that could perhaps change if Harbaugh does decide to again consider the NFL. The fact that Ross is apparently a big fan of Harbaugh may be somewhat unsettling to Flores.