Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has informed his team and staff that he will serve a three-game suspension to start this season as part of the school’s self-imposed penalties for NCAA infractions, two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Monday.
The people spoke to AP on condition of anonymity because the school was notifying the NCAA of its intentions and preparing an official announcement.
A suspension would take Harbaugh off the sideline for the second-ranked Wolverines’ home games against East Carolina, UNLV and Bowling Green. He will be permitted to coach the team during the week, as per NCAA rules.
Michigan had proposed a four-game suspension as part of a negotiated resolution to the case, but the NCAA’s committee on infractions reportedly declined to accept that proposal.
Michigan self-imposing a penalty does not end the case, which could still go to a hearing before the COI and take months to be resolved.
Michigan received notice earlier this year that the NCAA was looking into potential rules infractions. The investigation involved impermissible texts and calls – including some by Harbaugh – to high school prospects during part of a pandemic-related dead period for contact with potential recruits. The NCAA also was looking at whether a member of Michigan’s off-field football staff violated rules by doing on-the-field coaching during practice.
Harbaugh previously told NCAA investigators in multiple meetings that he would not agree to an unethical conduct charge for not being forthright, according to two people familiar with the situation. The people spoke earlier this year to the AP on condition of anonymity because details of the investigation have not been shared.
AP Sports Writer Larry Lage in Detroit contributed.