Reports: NCAA panel nixes Jim Harbaugh’s suspension deal

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The NCAA Committee of Infractions (COI) did not approve a negotiated four-game suspension for Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh, throwing his status into limbo, Yahoo Sports and ESPN reported Saturday.

It’s unclear what happens next.

While Yahoo Sports reports Harbaugh will coach every game for the Wolverines this season, ESPN reported that Harbaugh’s status for 2023 has yet to be determined. Yahoo reported that the final resolution on Harbaugh would likely come sometime in 2024, well after this season.

It was reported late last month that Harbaugh had reached a deal with the NCAA on a four-game suspension as punishment for recruiting violations and misleading information surrounding those allegations.

But that needed the approval of the COI, which was expected to be a formality, per the Yahoo report. It’s unclear what hurdles arose to throw the case back into the NCAA’s disciplinary process.

Yahoo reported last month that Harbaugh agreed to the proposed four-game suspension that would see him miss home against East Carolina (Sept. 2), UNLV (Sept. 9), Bowling Green (Sept. 16) and Rutgers (Sept. 23).

Lying to investigators is an NCAA Level I violation and carries a mandatory six-game suspension. The negotiated reduced suspension could also impact multiple assistant coaches, including offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore and tight ends coach Grant Newsome. They’re named in the NCAA’s notice along with former defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald, who left Michigan to become defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens.

Harbaugh, 59, has denied that he lied to investigators, claiming he didn’t recall details they were requesting around meetings with recruits.

Michigan was 13-1 last season and played in the College Football Playoff for the second consecutive year, falling to TCU in the national semifinal game on Dec. 31.

–Field Level Media

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