After years of wondering whether Chip Kelly’s fast-paced offense would translate to the NFL, we have the answer. It has worked well enough to bring the Eagles to an 8-6 record, and to the brink of making the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Still, there are no questions about whether Kelly’s offense can work at the college ranks, and that may always lead to speculation about whether Kelly would have interest in returning to college coaching, if the right college job opened up.
“League sources say Chip Kelly is prominent on the new list of new Longhorns AD Steve Patterson, who’s heard that Kelly misses some aspects of the college football game,” Mortensen said. “If Kelly is interested, an NCAA expert believes that the 18-month show cause for sanctions at Oregon was more like a slap on the wrist and was not a major hurdle.”
The show cause penalty that Mortensen is alluding to, was placed on Kelly shortly after he left Oregon. Essentially, within 18 months of Kelly having the penalty placed on him, if he chose to go back to college, his new school would have to agree with the NCAA to take on Kelly’s restrictions.
Due to the fact that Kelly was given the penalty after he left college for the NFL, the NCAA didn’t specify which sanctions would be placed on Kelly, should he choose to return within the 18 month period that the show cause would last for. Kelly isn’t quite six months into those penalties, which means that he still has just over a year worth of restrictions in the NCAA. That may not deter a college from wanting to hire him, but he may decide that if he ever does choose to go back to college, he will wait until he doesn’t have NCAA sanctions hanging over him.
It also certainly is possible that Kelly misses “some aspects” of coaching at the college level, but that doesn’t mean that he isn’t enjoying coaching at the pro level. It also doesn’t mean that he intends to return to coaching at the college level anytime soon.
Kelly wouldn’t comment on Mortensen report, but a team spokesman told Mort that Kelly “laughed it off” when he was told that his name was on the list.
Chip has never exactly been private about the fact that it was a very tough choice for him to leave Oregon to come to the NFL, but what does that mean? It isn’t like he can decide tomorrow that he wants his head-coaching position at Oregon back, because Mark Helfrich has done a pretty good job in his first season in Oregon, after taking over for Kelly.
Kelly may have occasional lust to be back at Oregon, but we all miss certain aspects of the past. That doesn’t mean that we aren’t content with our present situation.
The idea that Kelly would leave an Eagles team that he has drastically turned around in first season is, as Kelly reportedly put it, laughable.
After denying the rumors over the weekend, Chip spoke again today about the speculation that he could spurn the Eagles to go take the Texas job.
“I haven’t spoken to anybody, nor will I speak to anybody” about a college job, including Texas, Kelly said.
“I understand you have to ask the question,” Kelly said Monday, “but I’m not involved in any jobs. I’m the coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. I’m going to prepare for the Bears and prepare for the Cowboys after that. Hopefully, we have an opportunity to go to the playoffs and I’m going to be here for a while.”
The Longhorns reportedly missed out on Nick Saban, and after Mack Brown’s resignation, they are in search of a new head man. I might suggest, making their head-coaching short list that reportedly features Kelly, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, Seahawks head-coach Pete Carroll, and Packers coach Mike McCarthy, a little more realistic. All of them, feel that they are in better positions in the NFL than they would be in college, and wouldn’t have much of a reason to have interest in the Longhorns job.