Sherrone Moore has been named the successor to Jim Harbaugh as the head coach of the Michigan Wolverines football team. Moore, who previously served as offensive coordinator, went 4-0 as acting head coach during the 2023 regular season. He takes over a program that is currently facing two NCAA investigations.
One of the ongoing probes is related to illicit recruiting and coaching during the COVID-19 dead period, for which Michigan received a formal notice of allegations on Dec. 20, 2023. The school self-imposed penalties, including a three-game suspension for Harbaugh and a one-game suspension for Moore. However, the NCAA rejected a negotiated resolution proposal, meaning the case will go through the NCAA’s judicial process.
The second investigation involves prohibited off-campus scouting and sign-stealing. While the NCAA has yet to issue an official notice of allegations, reports suggest that more violations are coming. Harbaugh could face a Level I violation under the coach responsibility provision, which holds a head coach accountable for staff actions leading to Level I violations.
Moore, as the new head coach, will have to lead Michigan through the punishments or penalties resulting from these investigations. It is unclear when a resolution will be reached. However, Michigan is unlikely to face major consequences that impact the current or future players, as the NCAA has softened its approach on how punishments affect athletes.
The biggest concern for Michigan is the possibility of vacated wins, which could tarnish their championship run. The extent of the evidence and the potential impact on the Wolverines’ record books will be determined once the NCAA issues the notice of allegations. Michigan is expected to argue that any edge gained from the prohibited scouting did not significantly impact game results.
Overall, Moore takes over as head coach at a high point for the Wolverines, but will have to navigate the ongoing NCAA investigations and potential punishments. His success will ultimately be measured by how he leads the team through these challenges and maintains the program’s success.