Jim Harbaugh says he’d help raise baby if family, someone in program had unplanned pregnancy

FILE -Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh watches during an NCAA college football game against Michigan State, Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021, in East Lansing, Mich. According to a person with knowledge of the process, New York Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham will interview at Vikings headquarters on Tuesday followed by Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh on Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022 . (AP Photo/Al Goldis, File) (Al Goldis, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

University of Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh, who spoke out against abortion last week, said in an interview that in the event of an unplanned pregnancy in his family or football program, he’d be open to raising the child.

Harbaugh spoke to ESPN’s Gene Wojciechowski last weekend, where they discussed various issues, sports and non-sports related, including his stance on abortion.

“I’ve told [them] the same thing I tell my kids, boys, the girls, same thing I tell our players, our staff members,” Harbaugh said. “I encourage them if they have a pregnancy that wasn’t planned, to go through with it, go through with it. Let that unborn child be born, and if at that time, you don’t feel like you can care for it, you don’t have the means or the wherewithal, then Sarah and I will take that baby.”

Harbaugh has been openly vocal about his stance on abortion, especially in recent weeks. Speaking at the Inn at St. John’s in Plymouth earlier this month, Harbaugh spoke as a Catholic, defending the “unborn,” in a keynote speech.

“I believe in having the courage to let the unborn be born,” Harbaugh said, according to the Detroit Catholic, the news service of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit. “I love life. I believe in having a loving care and respect for life and death. My faith and my science are what drives these beliefs in me.” (Read more on this here)

ESPN asked Harbaugh about the comments during the interview. “Faith, family, football ... those are my priorities. I just think that ... the abortion issue is one that’s so big that it needs to be talked about. It needs serious conversation. What do you think? What do I think? What do others think?” Harbaugh said.

“It’s a life-or-death type of issue. And I believe in, and I respect, people’s views. But let’s hear them. Let’s discuss them because there’s passion on both sides of this issue. So when you combine that with respect, that’s when the best results come. ... [I’m] just contributing to that conversation and that communication, which I think is really important, in my opinion.”

Harbaugh has spoken out against abortion before. In 2020, he called abortion “horrendous” on a podcast published by the National Review. He regularly speaks about his commitment to faith.

Jim Harbaugh has seven children from two different marriages.


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Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / ClickOnDetroit.com. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.