SAN DIEGO -- Jim Harbaugh agreed Tuesday to a four-year
contract to remain as coach at the University of San Diego.
Harbaugh was courted by three Division I-A schools in recent
weeks, but chose to stay at the small Catholic Division I-AA university.
In his second season as head coach, Harbaugh led the Toreros to
a school-best 11-1 record and their first Pioneer Football League
title. The Toreros also won the Sports Network Cup after finishing
ranked No. 1 in the I-AA Mid-Major poll.
"My vision is to win multiple PFL championships," said
Harbaugh, who played quarterback in the NFL for 15 seasons,
including two with the Chargers. "We've done one and we want to
continue to build on that.
"I know we're going to have a big challenge to do better than
what we did last year, but I feel we have the team to do that,"
Harbaugh said. "We want to win with numbing repetition."
Harbaugh interviewed for the head coaching job at Rice before
pulling his name out of contention, and interviewed at San Diego
State, which hired Chuck Long. He also was a candidate at Temple.
"I definitely weighed some options," Harbaugh said. "I felt
like this is the best thing. I'm very happy here. This is a school
that does things right, and wins. We've had so much success here
due to our players, our coaches and our administration. I just want
to continue that."
The Toreros had only eight senior starters last year. Senior
running back Evan Harney, who sustained head injuries in a freak
accident just before the start of training camp, has applied for a
medical redshirt season, and Harbaugh said he's gotten good
responses while recruiting.
Athletic director Ky Snyder was glad Harbaugh decided to stay.
"I think there's always a concern you have with very successful
people moving on," Snyder said. "But at the same time, one of the
things I hear from Jim all the time is about his vision and how
much he likes it here. That's why I always thought we would get
Harbaugh is 18-5 in two seasons, and the Toreros have a 13-game
home-winning streak. Harbaugh also guided USD to its first win over
an Ivy League school, a 17-14 victory over Yale.
"Our goal here is to win conference championships on a regular
basis without sacrificing academic integrity, and we're certainly
in position to start doing that with the football program," Snyder
Harbaugh was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence
on Oct. 30, and pleaded innocent on Dec. 15. A trial was scheduled
for Feb. 16.