Oregon Coach Chip Kelly to Pursue the NFL?

By Patrick Schmidt

Oregon is the new No. 1 team in the country and Chip Kelly’s team would be in the BCS National Championship Game for the second time in three years if the team wins the remainder of their games.

With all the success Kelly has had since taking over for the retired Mike Belotti, the NFL has taken notice and could once again inquire about the services of the Oregon head coach who interviewed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last year.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, “Multiple NFL teams with coaching uncertainties are plotting ways to talk to and try to hire Kelly… He will have to fend off NFL suitors who can envision him coaching their NFL team and many believe he will.”

For years NFL teams were hesitant to hire college coaches who have been epic failures in the NFL.

Washington Redskins fans are still trying to recover from the Steve Spurrier era and the best coach in college football, Nick Saban, was mediocre at best during his three-year tenure with the Miami Dolphins.

The worst in the past decade was the abbreviated one year Bobby Petrino spent with the Atlanta Falcons when he resigned after 13 games to take the Arkansas job.  He left a letter with his players telling them of his departure.

However, the past few years have seen three marquee coaches make the leap from college to the pro ranks with various ranges of success.

Pete Carroll left USC after a highly successful run that resulted in two national titles and has guided the Seattle Seahawks back to playoff contention.

Jim Harbaugh left Stanford to become the coach of the San Francisco 49ers and was one play away from the Super Bowl last year.

In his first year at Tampa Bay after a long run at Rutgers, Greg Schiano has shown the ability to succeed at this level and has markedly improved the Tampa Bay team in less than one full season already.

Knowing the recent success of college coaches making the leap to the NFL I would not be shocked if Kelly considered leaving Oregon for the NFL.

Before that decision is made he is focused on the Ducks and winning the school a national title.

Follow me on Twitter @PatrickASchmidt

Patrick is a diehard Chicago sports and an avid college football fan, and host of “The Wake-up Call,” a weekly sports show on Sportstownchicago.com airing live on Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.

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