OXFORD (FOX19) – Super Bowl champion coach John Harbaugh, a 1984 graduate of Miami University, will be inducted into the Cradle of Coaches Association and immortalized with a statue at Yager Stadium's Cradle of Coaches Plaza.
Both the statue and the Association induction will occur in early 2014.
The statue of Harbaugh will join the existing Cradle of Coaches statues of Earl "Red" Blaik, Paul Brown, Carm Cozza, Paul Dietzel, Wilbur "Weeb" Ewbank, Ara Parseghian, John Pont and Glenn "Bo" Schembechler. The statues honor Miami graduates who have earned recognition as national collegiate or professional coaches of the year, who have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame or the Pro Football Hall of Fame, or whose teams won national collegiate or professional /Super Bowl championships.
"Miami is a very special place and as anyone who played or coached at Miami knows that the Cradle of Coaches is a great honor," said Harbaugh. "To me, there is no greater recognition in coaching. To be included with these great men is something only dreamed about. I am most grateful to Miami, which is to say the coaches, teammates and professors that made a positive impact on an impressionable young guy. Coach (Tom) Reed gave me an opportunity and taught me important lessons about becoming a man. Coach (Jay) Fry pushed and supported us. There are great teachers and many friends that I cherish to this day. Miami is the people who have made the diff erence in so many lives. Whole-hearted thanks to the current administration and board for such a wonderful gesture. I will be forever grateful to Miami."
Harbaugh's image also will be added to the Cradle of Coaches mural that is on front of the scoreboard on the south end of Yager Stadium.
"Miami University is thrilled to both celebrate and honor Coach John Harbaugh through his induction into the Cradle of Coaches Association," said Sayler. "The pride that John has for Miami University is clear from the moment you speak with him and he is another example of the great student-athletes that Miami has produced. It is through Love and Honor that we are so excited to extend this well-deserved invitation to Coach John Harbaugh."