Broncos owner Greg Penner reportedly traveled to Ann Arbor to meet with Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh last week about a vacancy for the franchise’s head coach.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported. A follow-up meeting between Penner, Denver’s general manager, George Peyton, and Harbaugh was the result of due diligence, as the Broncos’ leadership had the same meeting with seven other candidates vying to become the franchise’s next coach. There was one. But the deal between Harbaugh and the Broncos never materialized.
Harbaugh has been widely associated with Denver’s appointment as head coach, initially conducting a virtual interview with the Broncos on Jan. 9. He stayed with Harbaugh and confirmed that Harbaugh would remain in the program.
Harbaugh cites the love of the “relationships” he has built with coaches, staff and management as a key reason for choosing to stay in Ann Arbor.
“My heart is at the University of Michigan,” Harbaugh said in a Jan. 16 statement. Go blue! “
However, before Ono made Harbaugh’s decision public, Harbaugh reportedly called the Broncos to inform them that they would not accept the head coaching job if offered to him. According to Shefter.
In addition to interviewing Harbaugh, the Broncos interviewed former Saints coach Sean Payton, former Colts and Lions head coach Jim Caldwell, former head coach at Stanford David Shaw, and Rams defensive coordinator. Raheem Morris, Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, 49ers defensive coordinator Demeko Lyons, and current Broncos defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero.
Over the past two seasons, Harbaugh has led the Wolverines to record heights. During the 2021 campaign, Michigan went 12-2, beating Ohio State for the first time in 10 years to clinch the Big Ten title and qualify for the Orange Bowl.
In 2022, Michigan dismantled Ohio State and won the Big Ten Championship, but lost to TCU in the Fiesta Bowl. With a 19-1 record, he led the organization to three NFC Championship Games.
He also led San Francisco to Super Bowl XLVII in the 2012 season.