Why the Fiesta Bowl Will be Chip Kelly's Last Game with Oregon

Lisa Horne@LisaHornePac-12 and Big 12 Lead WriterJanuary 2, 2013

November 10, 2012; Berkeley, CA, USA; Oregon Ducks head coach Chip Kelly along the sideline against the California Golden Bears during the first quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The rumors just won't go away.

On December 23, CBSSports' Jason La Canfora reported that the Philadelphia Eagles were interested in Chip Kelly.

The Philadelphia Eagles will consider Chip Kelly to replace Andy Reid, according to league sources, and multiple executives with rival teams anticipate Philadelphia making a heavy push to land the Oregon head coach.

The Eagles are reportedly not the only NFL team going after Kelly.

ESPN's Adam Schefter announced on SportsCenter Wednesday that according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, "The Browns are going to meet or try to meet with Chip Kelly of Oregon on Friday in Arizona at some point or another." The Ducks play the Kansas State Wildcats in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on Thursday.

Kelly has been dogged by questions all week about his future, and his answers haven't exactly been reassuring to Duck fans. In his last media press conference for the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, Kelly was asked if he expected any offers from NFL teams. The Oregonian reported his response.

 "I don't expect anything. I've said this a million times. I'm never surprised by anything. I do not know what the future holds. I do know we have a football game tomorrow night and I'm going to be there."

The fact that Kelly says he doesn't know what his future holds seems to signify that he isn't sold on staying at Oregon—if he intended on staying at Oregon, wouldn't he say so and put this drama to bed? The rumors are there. And he's not denying or confirming their validity.

It's that big elephant in the room. You can't ignore it because it demands to not be ignored. 

Kelly came close to taking the Tampa Bay job less than a year ago so let's not pretend he's perfectly happy staying at the college coaching level. Plus he's got that NCAA microscope dialed in on zoom after Oregon reportedly was denied a summary disposition by the NCAA and will now face an infraction hearing over its use of Willie Lyles' recruiting services.

Reports of NCAA sanctions looming, NFL executives flying to Arizona to meet with Kelly and Kelly himself not denying he has any interest in an NFL coaching job all point to one direction.

The 2013 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl will be Kelly's last game as Oregon's head coach unless the NFL big brass don't acquiesce to his wanting most of the control over personnel decision making. According to the NFL.com, Cleveland appears to be a team willing to do just that. 

Banner and new owner Jimmy Haslam III are committed to a Browns hierarchy that would afford the coach final say over the roster, with a general manager -- or lesser-titled front-office figure -- to assist with personnel decisions. The type of coach they bring in will dictate who they hire on the personnel side

We'll know exactly how persuasive Kelly can be the day after the Fiesta Bowl.

It may be Black Friday for the Quack Attack.