The latest development on the sign-stealing allegation will be a long ride for Michigan lawyers. Jim Harbaugh’s son, James Harbaugh, offered a word of encounter on Instagram to the university legal team in the wake of his father’s suspension.
The Big Ten announced the suspension of Jim Harbaugh on Friday for the rest of the regular season for violating the conference’s sportsmanship policy. This comes in the wake of an ongoing investigation into the allegation by the NCAA, which is still in the early stages.
In an IG story posted on Friday, James posted a picture of his father and sent a cryptic message to the University of Michigan legal team. He captioned the post with:
“Michigan lawyers, let’s ride.”
Michigan seeking a temporary restraining order
In reaction to the penalty, attorneys representing Michigan and Jim Harbaugh filed a breach of contract complaint on Friday night. They requested a Michigan judge to intervene and prevent the Big Ten from suspending Harbaugh for the upcoming weekend.
However, the temporary restraining order sought by Michigan was not immediately granted and Harbaugh had to miss the Penn State game. He is notably allowed to continue his coaching duties with the team during the week, but he can’t appear on the sideline during games.
According to ESPN, an in-person hearing for the temporary restraining order is set to take place next Friday at 9 am ET. This legal proceeding will likely be crucial in determining whether Harbaugh can be suspended or make appearances in the upcoming games.
Grounds for Jim Harbaugh’s hasty suspension by the Big Ten
The Big Ten’s suspension of Jim Harbaugh is based on the conference’s sportsmanship policy, which operates with more expediency compared to the NCAA’s lengthy investigation processes. This streamlined approach allows for a quicker resolution in addressing alleged violations.
The conference, however, clarified in a 13-page report explaining its disciplinary decision on the Wolverines that:
“This is not a sanction of Coach Harbaugh. It is a sanction against the University that, under the extraordinary circumstance presented by this offensive conduct, best fits the violation.”
Should Michigan’s application for a restraining order get rejected, Harbaugh will end the 2023 college football regular season the way he started it. The coach was notably served a self-imposed three-game suspension at the beginning of the season for a low-level recruitment violation.