Chip Kelly Needs to Shrug Off Fans, Bolt For the NFL

By Brandon Cavanaugh
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon Ducks head football coach Chip Kelly is beloved by everyone in Eugene, Ore. for taking the program to the heights he has.

Well…almost everyone. A few anonymous boosters apparently don’t like the guy, but their distaste might not be a problem for much longer.

While fans are plastering signs, posters and probably have plans for a solid gold statue laid out, there’s a potential storm brewing and Kelly doesn’t need to be around to weather it. The Willie Lyles saga is going to flip to the Eugene, Ore. chapter any time now. Since Kelly is getting hard looks from at least one NFL franchise, he’d be wise to parlay the success that got him the Oregon gig in the first place and jump to the big leagues.

It’s a can’t-lose situation. Yeah, Ducks fans would be…well, really mad, especially if the NCAA decides to body check the program with probation, but as media personality Bomani Jones has said in relation to fans, “Don’t nobody give a d— about you.” In this case, that “nobody” would be Kelly. In the college football head coaching game, you look out for one person: yourself.

Let’s say Kelly heads to the City of Brotherly Love. If he succeeds and turns the Philadelphia Eagles into a respectable franchise, maybe wins a few playoff games, great. If he does no better than Andy Reid has, oh well.

I guarantee you that at least one major college program would be ready jump on him if he’s available in a few years, especially if any punishment handed to the Ducks is light.

As the Ducks prepare to take on the Kansas State Wildcats in this year’s Fiesta Bowl, don’t think their head man doesn’t have the NFL tucked away in his subconscious. Fortunately, his team has the talent to run circles around the Wildcats, so even if he temporarily daydreams, fans will be too mesmerized by Oregon’s play-call signs involving beef brisket and the late Randy Savage to notice.

My advice for Kelly: Do your best Kenjon Barner impression and run like the wind if the opportunity presents itself.

Brandon Cavanaugh is a college football columnist for Rant Sports and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter: @eightlaces

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