3 replacements for Michigan if Jim Harbaugh is fired or leaves for the NFL

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Brent Venables, Clemson Tigers

Brent Venables, Clemson Tigers. (Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY NETWORK)

Jim Harbaugh’s seat is getting particularly hot with Michigan football.

Nobody associated with Michigan football can be happy with Jim Harbaugh after this Saturday.

The Michigan Wolverines were upset at home by a rebuilding Michigan State Spartans team. Michigan’s secondary was torched all game long and the offense looks as pedestrian as ever under Harbaugh. With this being Harbaugh’s sixth year at Michigan, he could be on the outs, whether he’s fired, resigns or takes an NFL job. If he were to get fired or leave for an NFL job, here are three suitable replacements at head coach.

Potential replacements for Jim Harbaugh at Michigan

Brent Venables
Defensive Coordinator Clemson Tigers

Eventually, he will have to get out of Dabo Swinney’s Clemson shadow

There will come a time where Clemson Tigers defensive coordinator Brent Venables will have a tough choice to make. Does he leave an incredible situation in Clemson to become a Power 5 head coach or will he stay in South Carolina to be Dabo Swinney‘s version of what Bud Foster was to Frank Beamer at Virginia Tech? His sons are on Clemson, but Michigan is too good to pass up.

Venables has been a huge reason Clemson has become a national power under Swinney. He is outstanding as a defensive coordinator, and a well-compensated one at that. Venables has been Swinney’s defensive coordinator since 2012 and was Bob Stoops’ defensive coordinator for over a decade before that with the Oklahoma Sooners. Is he ready to be in the big chair finally at age-50?

There are very few Power 5 jobs as lucrative as Michigan. His defensive-mindedness will translate well to the Big Ten. With him being at Clemson and Oklahoma throughout the 21st century, Venables should have no issues being able to formulate a strong offensive staff around him. There are few coordinators who could make the leap to Michigan, and Venables is totally one of them.

Again, this will come down to family, as in the Clemson Family. With Venables’ two sons Jake and Tyler playing for the Tigers, it might be a tough sell to get them to leave a winning situation in warm South Carolina for a new start in colder Michigan. However, this is the type of Power 5 job that only comes available every few years or so. Is it enticing enough to get Venables to leave?

Additionally, Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott could be a potential candidate.

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