NEW YORK, N.Y. — The Associated Press announced Friday (Dec. 10) that University of Michigan J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Head Football Coach Jim Harbaugh has been named the organization’s coach of the year. Harbaugh becomes the first Michigan head coach to win the award.
Harbaugh has guided Michigan to the College Football Playoff National Semifinal in the Capital One Orange Bowl against No. 3 Georgia on New Year’s Eve (Friday, Dec. 31) at 7:30 p.m. ET. The second-ranked Wolverines (12-1) are making their first appearance in the CFP after winning the 2021 Big Ten Championship with a 42-3 victory over No. 12 Iowa at Lucas Oil Stadium on Dec. 4.
U-M has won 12 games for just the third time in school history, equaling the victory totals of the 1905 and 1997 teams. The Wolverines won the Big Ten East Division title with a 42-27 victory over No. 2 Ohio State to finish the regular season with an 8-1 conference mark.
Michigan ranks in the top 15 in scoring defense (fourth) and scoring offense (13th) and in the top 20 in total defense (13th) and total offense (18th). The Wolverines list in the top 25 of 27 NCAA statistical categories, including top-10 rankings in 12 areas, and leads the nation in tackles for loss allowed and kick return defense.
U-M had 22 players (10 offense, nine defense, three special teams) recognized with all-conference accolades, led by six first team All-Big Ten performers. In addition, defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and kicker Jake Moody were named first team All-Americans. Hutchinson won the Rotary Lombardi Award, Ted Hendricks Award and the Chicago Tribune Silver Football and Moody became Michigan’s first-ever winner of the Lou Groza Award.
The AP College Football Coach of the Year Award has been given annually since 1998 to college football’s national coach of year. The award is voted on by the Associated Press voters that participate in the weekly college football AP poll.
Harbaugh also is a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award, which is sponsored by the Football Writers Association of American in conjunction with the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
COURTESY MICHIGAN ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS