With rumors swirling that current Oregon Ducks head coach Chip Kelly could be coaching his final collegiate game this evening in the Fiesta Bowl, UO already has a plan in place. According to George Schroeder of USA Today, Oregon will name offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich head coach should Kelly leave for an NFL team, as has been expected since November.
Helfrich, 39, would be one of the younger head coaches in college football should he receive the job.
Helfrich has worked alongside Kelly since 2009. Before becoming the offensive coordinator at UO, Helfrich spent time at Boise State, Arizona State and Colorado as a quarterbacks coach. He began his tenure at Oregon as a graduate assistant in 1997.
It is still unclear if Kelly is leaving for the NFL, although multiple reports indicate that he has interest in the vacancies in Cleveland and Philadelphia. Back in November, one report said it was "inevitable" that the current Oregon coach would move to the pros within a year or two.