Michigan agrees to 3-year probation for recruiting violations

Michigan will serve three years of probation after reaching an agreement with the NCAA over recruiting violations and coaching activities by noncoaching staff members, the NCAA announced Tuesday.

Michigan will face recruiting restrictions and pay a fine in relation to violations from five current or former football employees.

The penalties include a one-year show-cause order for all five individuals.

“Today’s joint resolution pertains to the University of Michigan Athletic Department and several former and current employees,” Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel said in a statement. “We are pleased to reach a resolution on this matter so that our student-athletes and our football program can move forward. We have no additional information and cannot comment further on other aspects of the NCAA’s inquiries.”

The NCAA said that former coach Jim Harbaugh — who guided the team to the College Football Playoff title in January — isn’t part in the agreement.

“The agreed-upon violations involve impermissible in-person recruiting contacts during a COVID-19 dead period, impermissible tryouts, and the program exceeding the number of allowed countable coaches when noncoaching staff members engaged in on- and off-field coaching activities (including providing technical and tactical skills instruction to student-athletes),” the NCAA said in a statement.

“The negotiated resolution also involved the school’s agreement that the underlying violations demonstrated a head coach responsibility violation and the former football head coach failed to meet his responsibility to cooperate with the investigation. The school also agreed that it failed to deter and detect the impermissible recruiting contacts and did not ensure that the football program adhered to rules for noncoaching staff members.”

Harbaugh is now the head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers.

“I filed a lengthy response to the (Notice of Allegations) on behalf of Coach Harbaugh, which unfortunately hasn’t been made public and will probably never see the light of day,” Tom Mars, Harbaugh’s attorney, told ESPN. “That concluded Coach Harbaugh’s participation in the case.”

Harbaugh served a three-game suspension at the beginning of the 2023 season after the NCAA felt he made false statements during the investigation. Then-offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore served a one-game suspension. Moore is now the Wolverines’ head coach.

Tuesday’s developments are unrelated to the Michigan sign-stealing investigation. That case is ongoing. Harbaugh also served a three-game suspension in that case.