Nobody on the internet really knows whether or not Jim Harbaugh is truly interested in leaving Stanford, and nobody close to Harbaugh is talking. However, there is one potentially huge inducement (aside from a new $50,000 crapper in Schembechler Hall) for JH to leave Palo Alto and come back east: the absolutely miserable attendance at Stanford games.
"A nationally-ranked football team with a star quarterback, well-known coach and gorgeous stadium would translate to sellout crowds on most college campuses.
But not at Stanford, where thousands of seats sit empty on any given Saturday. The small crowds are an object of derision for opponents and a source of frustration for school officials, including football coach Jim Harbaugh. The situation has left others baffled.
"Their head coach is a force of nature. Their quarterback is a Heisman Trophy candidate. Their team is one of the best in the country, and they have 6.5 million people living here," said Andy Dolich, who has worked as an executive for the A's, Warriors and 49ers. "They've got everything going for them."
But the empty seats -- in 50,000-seat Stanford Stadium, more than 10,000 regularly go unfilled -- are no longer just a head-scratcher. They could cost the football team a berth in a major bowl game."