In my opinion, Jim Harbaugh has 4 options. Options 1 and 2, after last night’s win, are a coin-flip / quarterback decision difference.
- Jim Harbaugh will stay at Stanford for another year, with his quarterback, and compete for the national title in college football next year. He’s a god amongst men in Palo Alto, so why not? Sure, maybe he has outgrown the team, but certainly not outgrown the chance for a title.
- Jim decides to go to the NFL, and right next door in good ‘ole San Francisco is where he stays, with the 49ers who are in need of a head coach after axing Mike Singletary. He gets paid a crap load of money, and follows in the footsteps of Bill Walsh, once Stanford coach-turned-49er coach who built a memorable dynasty for the team. Here Jim Harbaugh tries to make the 49ers move up their 1st round draft pick from #7 to #1, and draft Andrew Luck. With Harbaugh + Luck in San Francisco, the 49ers could see Super Bowl highlights for the next 10 years, or more. What will the 49ers need to do to grab the first overall pick for 2011? Well for starters, obviously, they cough up their #7 pick to the Carolina Panthers. They also trade next year’s 1st round pick (which may be substantially worse than #7 overall if the team does better with this possible combination of new player/coaching staff). To make it seem tempting, they throw some other draft picks to Carolina, such as a 2nd round pick this or next year. Unless Carolina needs players and not picks, maybe we can give them Nate Clements? Hahahaha!!
- Jim Harbaugh takes his dream job coaching at Michigan, where he was as a player. He’s still popular, but he needs to rebuild a college team again, and his opportunity for being an NFL coach closes for the next 4-5 years. Two weeks ago, or even two days ago, this seemed like the likely decision, but now not so much. If he wants to stay in college, it’s more likely that he will play for the title next year at Stanford.
- He goes the way of the NFL, and moves to Denver to play for John Elway. He has Tim Tebow as a quarterback, and he’ll attempt to build that team up.
Given the possibilities, this is what I see as the Stanford head coach’s future, at this point. It seems as if Andrew Luck will only go to the NFL if Jim Harbaugh leaves Stanford (by way of the NFL or by going to Michigan), or he could stay if Harbaugh also stays.