By Ashley Scoby

Before he decided to take over the national conversation in football, Jim Harbaugh wanted to be a shortstop. Specifically, he wanted to be Derek Jeter.

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Although he went on to become the starting quarterback at Michigan and then later for the Bears in the NFL, Harbaugh also played baseball growing up. And when he wasn’t turning around Stanford or the 49ers as a head coach many years down the road, he was always harboring another pipe dream in the back of his mind – to play in the majors.

While Harbaugh will never play major league baseball, he did at least get to hang out with his idol on Saturday. Jeter – who grew up in Kalamazoo, Mich. – visited Ann Arbor for the Michigan-BYU game and even got his own Wolverines jersey.

“It was really good to have Derek Jeter on the sideline, personally for me,” Harbaugh said in an interview on the Stoney and Bill with Sara show on 97.1 The Ticket Thursday morning. “I took great pleasure in that. As a youngster, I wanted to be a major league shortstop. I dreamed about being Derek Jeter.”

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Harbaugh had a game to coach that day, but he still got to talk to the Yankee legend before kickoff.

It wasn’t the first celebrity that Harbaugh had spent time with in Ann Arbor: James Earl Jones recorded the voiceover for Michigan’s pregame hype video a few weeks ago. As much as the head coach enjoyed that meet-and-greet, the one with Jeter was special, given young Harbaugh’s ambitions.

But when the moment came to shake hands with Jeter, he had the same moment so many others have probably had when shaking Harbaugh’s hand. He walked away chiding himself for not saying something more clever to the captain.

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“I get star-struck a little bit, especially because that’s what I envisioned being,” Harbaugh said. “And (I) fell short of that, but we also had a game to play so maybe I shouldn’t be that hard on myself.”