The long and irritating Chip Kelly saga appears to be over, for now.
Just confirmed earlier reports. Chip Kelly is staying at Oregon. Someone but him a beer in Nashville.
— Pete Thamel(@SIPeteThamel) January 7, 2013
This was not Kelly’s first flirtation with the NFL after almost leaving the Ducks to become the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Kelly ended up having a change of heart, and he decided to return to Oregon at the last minute due to “unfinished business.”
Oregon fans everywhere can now breathe a sigh of relief with their coach returning to improve on his 46-7, four-year record with the Ducks, but Kelly’s return will teach us many lessons.
I can promise you that next year Helfrich will be a desired head-coaching candidate across the nation; everyone associated with the Oregon program during Helfrich’s tenure has high praise for him and believes he would make a great head coach.
The only question is whether Helfrich would accept any offers.
Helfrich is an Oregonian. He was born and raised in Coos Bay and attended Southern Oregon University in Ashland, OR as a quarterback.
After graduation, Helfrich became a graduate assistant for the Ducks before leaving with Dirk Koetter to serve at Boise State and Arizona State as a quarterbacks coach.
Before replacing Kelly as the offensive coordinator, Helfrich held the same position at the University of Colorado.
As much as you can tell Helfrich would love to stay at Oregon, you also to have to believe that he wants to be a head coach.
Despite his loyalty, Helfrich’s patience could be running thin after nearly becoming the head coach twice now.
Last season, being honest actually helped Kelly ink one of the nation’s top prospects, and a key contributor for the Ducks this season, Arik Armstead.
Armstead reported that he was impressed with Kelly’s honesty on whether or not he would be Armstead’s coach all four years.
That will no longer be a case.
Kelly has flip-flopped between staying at Oregon and going to the NFL twice now, and recruits will begin to take notice of that.
While Armstead was impressed by Kelly’s honesty, not all recruits will be intrigued with playing for a coach that appears to be waiting for the best situation in the NFL.
Any concern of the Ducks losing their standing as one of college football’s best teams next season is long gone now.
With Kelly and a host of talent on the roster returning for next season, Oregon will again enter the season as a favorite to win the national championship.
It appears the entire coaching staff, the starting quarterback, all of the receivers, De’Anthony Thomas and the majority of the defense will be back wearing whatever jersey combination the Ducks go with on that day in 2013.
That and an easy schedule could set the Ducks up for yet another title run.