Mack Brown may or may not be stepping down at Texas, enter Jim Harbaugh chatter

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The University of Texas may or may not be parting ways with football coach Mack Brown. We break down what it all means for 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Word around the Interwebz has University of Texas football coach Mack Brown set to resign from his duties. He has been head coach of the Longhorns for 16 seasons, but appears to be running out of gas. The school is denying the report, and Brown claims he's down in Florida doing some recruiting, so I suppose we don't know anything for certain.

Earlier this month, just prior to USC hiring Steve Sarkisian, CBS Sports' Bruce Feldman reported some rumors about the Harbaugh brothers and the USC and Texas jobs. He said one rumor had USC considering Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, while another source felt USC or Texas were more likely to target Jim Harbaugh.

This was one random rumor, but given the potential departure of Brown at Texas, it is definitely "a thing". Even if Mack Brown sticks around Texas, the 49ers will still eventually have to figure out an extension for Jim Harbaugh. The 49ers Week 14 win over the Seahawks guaranteed a third straight winning season. One person made a good point about his impact:

I do think the 49ers would have gotten Levi's Stadium figured out without Harbaugh, but his arrival and immediate success sped up the process. Maybe the 49ers get the needed financing down the road, but I don't think the 49ers would be moving into Levi's Stadium in 2014 if not for Harbaugh's success. He developed a great product, and got the fanbase fired up after years of misery under Erickson, Nolan and Singletary. I don't think anybody can argue that he is not one of the reasons Levi's Stadium is ready to go.

That of course means Harbaugh has some leverage in a contract extension. Even without an open offer out there for Harbaugh, I'm confident Jed York recognizes the value of what Harbaugh brings to the table. The 49ers have proven they will pay up as needed, whether it be for a new stadium, extending current players, or investing heavily in technological infrastructure for the front office. Jim Harbaugh is a significant asset, and they need to make sure they get a deal done that keeps him in town for the foreseeable future.

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