Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
The Oregon Ducks officially announced offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Mark Helfrich will replace Chip Kelly as the new head coach.
The Oregon Ducks wasted no time in finding a replacement for Chip Kelly, and it's the replacement everyone expected. According to Bruce Feldman of CBS Sports, quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich will be announced as Oregon's new head coach on Sunday.
It's long been thought that Helfrich was the successor-in-waiting for Oregon if Kelly decided to move onto the next level. Helfrich is well-attuned to the rhythm and pace of the Oregon offense, having watched the offense from the booth the last four years. Helfrich relayed crucial defensive information to Kelly, who in turn called the plays that helped the Ducks become one of the most devastating offenses in college football. Helfrich has been Kelly's offensive coordinator since 2009, and he figures to keep the up-tempo pace and spread-option offense going in Eugene.
Oregon ended up interviewing Stanford's Pep Hamilton after Kelly's departure, but the top target to replace Kelly was always Helfrich.
Oregon doesn't have much time until National Signing Day (three weeks and counting), so Oregon wasted no time in hiring Helfrich. Chief among Helfrich's concerns is assuaging recruits that the status quo holds in Eugene, and that there is nothing to fear from the NCAA regarding the investigation into improper recruiting practices.