Skip to content analyst names Chip Kelly a top candidate for USC job

Sep 30, 2013, 1:55 PM EDT


One of the true destination jobs in all of college football opened up over the weekend when the University of Southern California fired head coach Lane Kiffin. It’s easy to land top recruits, you’re living on the beach—where do I send a resume?

At least one analyst believes Chip Kelly might be asking the same question. touts Gil Brandt as “a longtime consultant to universities in the hiring process of head coaches,” and Mr. Brandt is of the opinion that Chip might be ready to wash his hands of the Philadelphia Eagles and head back to school by the time this season ends.

3. Chip Kelly, Philadelphia Eagles head coach: It would not shock me to see Kelly, 49, leave Philadelphia after one season, especially if the Eagles have a down year. Kelly knows better than most the kind of job this is and can be. He has never been in pro football before this season, and to tell you the truth, I’m not sure he’s made for it. He reminds me of Steve Spurrier and Bob Stoops; they were destined to be college coaches. Kelly is similar. Being around him a little, I know he’s a rah-rah, enthusiastic guy. Guys like that don’t cut it for very long in the NFL. What he did at Oregon, transforming an OK program when he got there to what it is today, is nothing short of remarkable. This one could potentially get messy because of the sanctions leveled against Oregon. Kelly received an 18-month show-cause penalty, which would make his re-entry into college football problematic, but not impossible.

Some might be tempted to give that prediction more weight after Sunday’s 52-20 drubbing in Denver. The Birds are 1-3, and the product on the field has looked progressively worse each week.

When Chip left Oregon to take the position in Philadelphia, he famously quipped that he “burned the boat,” meaning he wasn’t going back. There’s also the matter of the five-year, $32.5 million contract he received from the Eagles, although no doubt Kelly would be well-compensated at USC.

Regardless, it’s pure conjecture at this point. If the Eagles’ season turns into a total disaster, that may make a move back to college somewhat more likely. For now, Kelly is focused on the 0-4 New York Giants in Week 5, a game that presents a real chance to get back in the win column.

Maybe a W would even tempt some fans down from a ledge.

>> Top candidates to replace Lane Kiffin at USC []

  1. shale0 - Sep 30, 2013 at 2:37 PM

    I’m just trying to remind myself that the Eagles have lost to teams with a combined 10-2 record. The Chiefs are actually good (and their head coach knows Philly’s personnel better than their current coaches), the Broncos are a goddamn juggernaut, and the Chargers game was a close one against a good team. If we can’t beat the Giants, then I worry.

    • Al - Oct 1, 2013 at 11:07 AM

      Are the Chiefs a good team? They haven’t beat a good team yet. I’m sure Andy will use 3 timeouts on the first series in a real game soon enough

  2. erzug - Sep 30, 2013 at 5:14 PM

    Posted by Michael David Smith on June 26, 2013, 10:43 AM EDT on ProFootballTalk.nbcsports

    “Kelly has been hit with an 18-month show-cause penalty, Bruce Feldman of CBS reports. That means if Kelly wants to return to coaching college football in the next two seasons, he and the school that hires him will have to show that they have a plan in place to abide by any restrictions that the NCAA puts on his recruiting.”

    So, we know CK isn’t going anywhere soon.

    • Andrew Kulp - Sep 30, 2013 at 5:25 PM

      So Chip and the university have to explain they have a plan to avoid future rules violations? As Mr. Brandt points out, that’s a very minor obstacle — certainly nothing that’s preventing coach from returning to college.

      I’m not saying I think he would, but that show-cause penalty is not stopping him.

      • hitnrun - Sep 30, 2013 at 10:18 PM

        As I understand it, “Show Cause” is a euphemism.

        What it really means is that the school would be signing up for a penalty commensurate with the penalty received by the offending school. Unless, of course, they can “show cause” for hiring the offending coach. Spoiler alert: you pretty much can’t.

        However, I have no idea what a Show Cause penalty would be for USC because Oregon was only lightly punished for infractions – would it be commensurate to 1 scholarship for a few years that Oregon is docked? Would the NCAA smite them further for their boldness? I don’t know.

        USC probably doesn’t know either which would probably stop them from pursuing Chip unless they thought he was clearly the most promising candidate.

      • will - Oct 1, 2013 at 1:52 PM

        maybe at a school other than usc. may be more difficult for usc, who i believe are still under sanctions from the pete carrol era.

  3. jay peezo - Sep 30, 2013 at 5:42 PM

    its a shame that the national media, especially ESPN, has so much time they need to cover and use anyone who has a hunch to fill the time…….like skip bayless

  4. nyphilsphan - Oct 1, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    The worst thing that could have happened to this team happened: we won big against a weak ‘Skins team and the national media got right on the Kelly train week 1. Any true Eagles fan knew that game was a mirage, but lazy national sportswriters get bored and need busy work. Now they have to backtrack- some have backtracked so far as to put Chip all the back in college (note: people have been writing about Chip Kelly leaving for college since the day he signed with an NFL team).

    No one can win in the NFL without some combination of a rock-solid secondary, a consistent pass-rush, or an elite QB. If we ALL KNEW we didn’t have any of those, I’m sure Chip Kelly knew. A 1-3 start is surprising only to those who haven’t been paying attention to this team the past 4 seasons.


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