It’s safe to say that Jim Harbaugh is pretty set on heading out of the college ranks and making the transition to the NFL. But the bigger question is who will land the lauded and highly sought after Stanford coach who dreams of winning his first Super Bowl.
SI.com’s Don Banks weighs in on the five teams reportedly interested in Harbaugh, coming to the conclusion that while the San Francisco 49ers are clearly the favorite, there are a few factors that could ultimately dissuade the Cardinals’ coach from joining the Niners.
“While San Francisco owner Jed York is desperate to find the right man to lead his team and help the franchise finally get a new stadium, he's reportedly not in the position to shell out the $6 million or $7 million per year that Harbaugh is rumored to be seeking,” Banks writes. “In that scenario, it's possible Harbaugh could price himself out of the 49ers price range.”
But which teams are willing to cough up the kind of cash that Harbaugh is apparently looking for? In come the Miami Dolphins, whose Harbaugh-landing prospects fall just short of the Niners. It’s not that they don’t have the cash to attract Harbaugh’s attention, but joining the AFC East with stacked teams like the Patriots and Jets is probably not how a first-year NFL coach is looking to start his career.
Other teams in the running: Denver Broncos, Oakland Raiders and Carolina Panthers. While they have far less of a shot than the Niners or Dolphins, anything is possible as Harbaugh makes his decision in the coming weeks.
Up tonight, MTSU takes on Miami in the GoDaddy.com Bowl:
Mid-Tennessee vs. Miami, Ohio (8:00 p.m., ET) – The 9-4 RedHawks take on the 6-6 Blue Raiders tonight in Mobile, Ala. as college football heads into its home stretch.
By The Numbers
$96 million – Amount of Adrian Beltre’s new six-year contract with the Texas Rangers.
20 – Number of shots Igor Bobkov was able to stop during Russia’s 5-3 rout of Canada in the World Junior Hockey Championships Wednesday.
79.7 – percentage of Hall of Fame votes Bert Blyleven received this year. Blyleven along with Roberto Alomar were chosen for this year’s Baseball HOF.