- House GOP ready to move border bill
- Bomb squad called after live WWII artillery washes on Cape Cod beach
- HAYDEN: Intelligence, evidence and the case against Russia
- Ohio university quiz implies atheists are naturally smarter than Christians
- Rep. Henry Cuellar on border crisis: ‘Playing defense on the one-yard line’
- Activists vow to occupy fast-food restaurants to get higher pay
- Rep. Luis Gutierrez: Senate Dems wary of immigration politics
- Summer camp for 1 percenters: Sushi, limos and shopping at FAO Schwarz
- Colorado gun crackdown law found to be built on faulty data
- Hank Aaron steps to fundraising plate for Democrat Michelle Nunn
Oregon’s Chip Kelly a top NFL coaching target again
Question of the Day
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — One of the first questions Oregon coach Chip Kelly was asked after arriving in Arizona for the Fiesta Bowl was about the possibility of coaching in the NFL.
The are-you-going-to-the-NFL questions haven’t let up in the five days since and only figure to pick up after seven coaches were fired Monday.
Deflection has been Kelly’s defense since the rumors started and it was no different after all those NFL openings cropped up.
“I’ve got a game to play,” Kelly said during the Fiesta Bowl’s media day on Monday. “We’re playing in the Fiesta Bowl. That’s the biggest thing in my life. If I allowed other things to get into my life, then they would be distractions, but there aren’t. Our focus 100 percent is on the Fiesta Bowl.”
Kelly has been an intriguing candidate for NFL teams for a few years.
The 49-year-old coach is known as an offensive innovator and his fast-paced, high-scoring offense has led to the most successful stretch in Oregon’s history.
The fifth-ranked Ducks have gone to four straight BCS bowl games, a run that includes a trip to the 2011 national championship game, Oregon’s first Rose Bowl win in 95 years last season and Thursday night’s Fiesta Bowl against No. 5 Kansas State at University of Phoenix Stadium.
The speculation over the past few years has been that Kelly has his eye on an NFL job and he even talked to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last year before saying he had unfinished business in Eugene.
The rumors began to pick up this season and followed him to the desert, where he’s been asked about the NFL every day he’s been here and has given a different version of the same answer every time.
“My heart is to win today and that’s it,” Kelly said. “I know everybody wants to hear a different answer. And I know that at times when I don’t give you guys the answer that you guys want, then I’m being evasive. I’m not being evasive.”
One reason that Kelly’s stock is so high is that NFL teams are starting to embrace the hurry-all-the-time offense he has nearly perfected in Eugene.
In college, coaches have latched onto the no-huddle offense, with teams across the country employing a version of it.
NFL teams have always seemed to be reluctant to borrow from the college ranks, sticking to smash-mouth football for years even while college offenses had unprecedented success with the spread.
The mindset has changed, at least some, over the past few years as teams have looked for ways to get ahead of the defenses. Several NFL teams have gone the high-octane route on offense, including New England, Seattle, Washington and Green Bay, to a certain extent.
Kelly has been the standard-bearer for the redline approach in college. His Ducks have ranked no lower than sixth in the country in rushing yards since he became offensive coordinator in 2007 and have been in the top 10 in scoring and total offense every year but one.
Second- and third-stringers eye 2016 if front-runner stumbles
- Michelle Obama says money in politics is bad, asks donors for 'big, fat check'
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Presidents of Honduras, Guatemala blame U.S. for border children crisis
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- EDITORIAL: Detroit's water 'spigot bigots'
- PRUDEN: The Democratic-wannabe mice under Hillary Clinton's feet
- Let it roll: D.C. Council hits Las Vegas on taxpayer's dime, leaves $14,000 tab
- White House readies for House GOP impeachment push: 'Foolish' to ignore
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- Brian Kelly, Notre Dame ready for different route to title
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq