What Chip Kelly's Departure Means for Oregon's Offense in 2013
Multiple news outlets are reporting that Oregon head coach Chip Kelly is taking his talents to the City of Brotherly Love.
Eagles make it official by announcing Chip Kelly as their head coach. Owner Jeffrey Lurie gets the man he wanted all along.
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) January 16, 2013
FOXSports.com reporter Jay Glazer confirmed Mortensen's report and George Schroeder of USA Today reported that Oregon has already reacted to the breaking news.
Oregon AD Rob Mullens quickly scheduled a 10 a.m. Pacific conference call -- right now -- with FB assistants.
— George Schroeder (@GeorgeSchroeder) January 16, 2013
Offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich has unofficially been tabbed as the next coach for the Ducks, but Oregon law requires all public universities to interview at least one minority candidate for an open head coaching position, according to a USA Today report.
That means a delay in announcing a new head coach and more time for Division I coaches to try and flip Oregon recruits.
If Helfrich becomes Oregon's new coach, we shouldn't see a drastic change in the program, but keep in mind that Chip Kelly called the offensive plays.
Helfrich was primarily responsible for the quarterbacks and tweaking the offense to adjust to opposing defenses on a week-to-week basis. So while Oregon will still have a prolific attack due to its arsenal of weapons, the play-calling may not be as creative as it once was. It may also feature more passing than running.
Moreover, Boise State head coach Chris Petersen, who has ties to Oregon as an assistant coach from 1995 through 2000, would actually be the better candidate due to his experience as a head coach and his familiarity with recruiting out of Oregon.
Petersen also won the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award in 2010. While many schools have wooed Petersen before, he cannot ignore this shocker out of Eugene.
Or can he?
The timing of this announcement couldn't be worse for Oregon.
While Helfrich's probable promotion to head coach won't likely affect this year's recruiting class much, losing Kelly this late may cause some unforeseen aftershocks.
With National Signing Day exactly three weeks away, the Ducks class of 2013 could get inundated by other Division I coaches.
And does Kelly's departure seem eerily similar to then USC head coach Pete Carroll's departure to the Seattle Seahawks—right before the NCAA hammered USC?
Oregon's looming Committee on Infractions hearing is also coming up, and many pundits believe Oregon will be sanctioned since its motion for a summary disposition was recently denied by the NCAA, according to this Yahoo! Sports report.
Remember: Recruits can be fickle.
If they start overthinking things or letting their imagination run wild while another school's coach is telling them how they won't be eligible for postseason play, the recruiting class could take a hit.
Then again, Kelly has Scout's No. 26 recruiting class with 13 commits and only one Top-100 commit.
Also of importance is this nugget from Duck Sports Authority:
Tyrell and Tyree Robinson, two of the more coveted recruits in the Ducks recruiting class have already announced that they are reopening their recruitment and will consider USC and Notre Dame as options.
Oregon fans have to be concerned.
While it may be just a case of some players getting their feathers ruffled, it also may be a case of some players wanting to fly south this winter.