Chip Kelly is one of the funniest personalities in college football. As the head coach of the Oregon Ducks football team, he provides fans with a lovable face of the program.
For media personalities covering Kelly, the job can be a little bit more difficult. “The sports reporters are very underpaid in the state,” he has said. “There should be a pension system for them and maybe some of them could retire early.”
His bark, of course, is bigger than his bite. While he can be intimidating, his candid honesty makes him an even more likable character.
In college football, September to December offers fans a season’s worth of material to analyze. January features bowl season as well as recruiting speculation, which will spill into the month of February.
When March comes around, college football is too often forgotten to the second half of the basketball season, March Madness in college sports and spring training in baseball.
Luckily for Oregon fans, they have a head coach that can make fans happy, even in the dullest month for college football.
“Sometimes I can be sarcastic,” Kelly has said. “I don’t know if people realize that.”
For the first time in Bleacher Report history, the brilliant mind of Chip Kelly has received an expose.
“Opening statements? Is this a debate? LaMichael: Thermonuclear war. Are you for it or against it?”
Is there a better way to begin? This has always been a personal favorite of mine, as media personalities in the room were immediately shut down and caught off guard.
Borrowing an idea from the Wu-Tang clan, in an interview, Kelly is not someone to…well…mess with. He makes that clear from the get go. As for this interview after the inaugural Pac-12 Championship Game, Kelly was asked if he had any “opening statements.”
Clearly offended by even the inkling of such a question (by his philosophy, he would be with the team and not having to talk to the media), he alarms the interviewer and makes sure everyone in the room understands that Kelly has nothing to add as an opening statement besides the absurd.
I am unclear as to where exactly Kelly stands on thermonuclear war, whether he's ever read the book on military strategy by Herman Kahn or what the relation has to do with the former Oregon superstar LaMichael James. We’re confident that if we are ever given the opportunity to sit down with our man of the hour, we will make sure we control the opening statements.
As for first impressions, Kelly says it best himself: “It ain’t gonna be kumbaya and hug ya the first time I meet ya…If I see you everyday and understand what you’re about, then I’ll die for ya.”
“I've worn the same practice visor since I got here in 2007 ... I'm just trying to save the school money.”
Chip Kelly’s signature white visor has become an iconic staple to his image and on-field persona here in Eugene.
The much-satirized, and even more often-used Halloween costume look has brought up plenty of questions in terms of iffy fashion choices in his tenure as the football coach. It has also been a constant subject in question for the popular media in Oregon.
When someone finally did approach him about the look, Kelly was quick to lend a sarcastic hand.
It’s a funny answer, especially considering at $75 million the budget for the athletic department has increased 250 percent in the last 10 years.
I’m pretty sure Chip is just a bit stubborn; if he wanted a new visor, it wouldn’t be the hardest thing in the world to obtain.
Come on, Chip. We can cost the school sixteen more bucks.
“Let me show you how to throw a football. You gotta flick it like a booger.”
So we’ve come to accept the fact that Kelly can be a bit of a weird guy when it comes to the things that he tells reporters.
His analogies, with a tendency for the absurd, can be a bit out of left field.
“They are like a tea bag,” Kelly says of quarterbacks. “You don't know what you are going to get until you put them in hot water.” While I’ve found that casually reading the label helps, Kelly speaks truly of the clutch nature that a quarterback has to poise himself by.
So Kelly thinks unconservatively about quarterbacks. That shouldn’t be a surprise either. It’s the same guy that calls a screen pass on 4th-and-2 and has used an actual Little Giants analogy (“Play-calling is driven by the players that you have. You can’t be a riverboat gambler if you are coaching the Little Giants”) to explain his style of coaching.
So can we just make sure I’m not the only one imagining Chip Kelly flicking a football like a booger, please?
“I don't know. Could be God.” – on who Nick Aliotti is talking to on the phone during Ducks games.
This could easily be my favorite Chip Kelly quote.
You see, it’s so simple but carries such a punch. First off, it tackles the relationship that the head coach (Kelly) has with his own defensive coordinator, and challenges any question of a “hierarchy” in place as Kelly denies even knowing who Aliotti is talking to.
I’ve always loved Aliotti, and I think he’s a big part of what makes this program so successful. Naturally, I love any jokes that tease and use him as a subject.
I also think the imagery of Aliotti talking to “God” is strangely poetic and beautiful. Aliotti stands on the field and he whispers nothing in particular at an eternal supernatural being with the intense nature of a football game going on behind him.
Only Chip Kelly can invoke these thoughts…
“HEY! WILL YOU SHUT UP!!!”
In the course of one night, this became the most quoted Chipism of all time.
At the University of Oregon, this video was the viral “oh my god, have you seen this?” of the week, and maintained popularity in most casual conversations on the Oregon football coach.
After Oregon beat Arizona State on ESPN College Gameday, (attractive) media personality Erin Andrews was interviewing the Oregon coach when a group of (drunk) disrespectful fans in the student section made fools of themselves on TV.
Visibly frustrated and tired of the amateurish look that the fans gave the university program, Kelly quickly became the parent and unleashed the fury of what would soon become a viral YouTube video that can be found here.
The “Hey! Will you shut up!” moment will certainly live in infamy when fans remember the Oregon 2011 football season, and will likely be recalled as fondly as when Kelly jumped about six feet up in the air when Oregon recovered the Rose Bowl fumble.
These are the quotes that I found that made me realize I actually really would have missed the Chip Kelly era if he had left for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers job.
As news broke, I wrote about how it was okay to usher in a new reign and that Petersen would have been okay for the job and that anyone could coach the Oregon speed talent.
Football aside, I like Kelly. He’s fantastic with the media, even if we’re reluctant to admit it or grant him that courtesy, and I think he’s a good guy to have in charge.
When in doubt, check back to the source of the mouth that delivered these gems:
- “De'Anthony's pretty good. D'Angelo's is a great restaurant back East. They sell great subs.” On a reporter’s mispronunciation of De’Anthony Thomas
- “Yeah we’re gonna have a party tonight. 9:30, meet us in the Cas. If the lights are off it’s just a surprise party.”
- “I was kind of surprised with a school like this that they didn’t have a lawnmower.”
- “Last time I checked, there is no ‘Hall of Average.’ “
- “I’d have a hard time saying, ‘Hey, please come to my program cause we’re really mediocre and I’ll never get offered a job anywhere else.’”
- “...John (Boyett) still thinks he should be quarterback.”
- "Our whole season is a 15-round heavyweight championship fight. We're in the fourth round. Round four just ended, we get over to the corner, get a squirt in our mouth and get ready to go, and we got to get ready for round five.”
- “The WSU play when he spun the kid around 3 or 4 times...I don’t even know who would think of doing that.” On DeAnthony Thomas’s touchdown against WSU "We're gonna go drink some Dr Pepper, and mail our Christmas presents with UPS!!!”
- “I kept thinking of Vince Vaughn in Wedding Crashers...screaming, ‘Erroneous! Erroneous!’” On his contemplation of the Bucs HC position
- “Steve Prefontaine...He was gonna run as hard as he can, for as long as he can, for as fast as he can...any other way was chicken @#$%"
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