Paul Finebaum on Chip Kelly's college football future: 'I do believe he will be back very quickly'
Is your school currently facing a crisis on the football field? If so, that can be a truly excruciating experience for any die-hard SEC football fan.
However, as bleak as things may seem now, there may be light at the end of the tunnel for several programs willing to swing for the fences and land the white whale of current coaching searches — former Oregon coach Chip Kelly.
Kelly, currently working as an analyst for ESPN, may be the most attractive free agent in college coaching since Urban Meyer left Florida. Considering several SEC coaches are on warm seats, if a school is willing to pay the cost that Kelly would likely command, it very well could land one of the college game’s elite coaches.
During his Monday morning guest appearance on WJOX 94.5 FM radio program The Opening Drive, SEC Network host Paul Finebaum was asked to give his thoughts on where his current ESPN co-worker Kelly may be coaching in 2018.
“It’s an awkward kabuki dance every Sunday morning about 7:15 when I bump into him,” Finebaum said on the air, “because I have the same response wherever I have previously been, I say ‘Chip, I was in Knoxville yesterday, saw a lot of signs with your name on it. Anything new?’ He says, ‘Haven’t gotten a call yet.’
“I mean, I’ve talked to him. I don’t want to speak for him because I don’t know him that well… I think he clearly wants to coach. He’s up there (at ESPN) studying college football, and I do believe he will be back very quickly.”
Those comments have got to be music to the ears of every SEC fan eager a change. If Kelly is as eager to get back in the game as Finebaum suggests, you have to imagine he will be the most sought-after college coach in some time.
In his four years as head coach at Oregon from 2009-2012, Kelly’s team went 46-7 overall, 33-3 in the Pac-10/12 and he led the Ducks to four BCS bowl games. At the end of the 2010 season, Oregon lost in the 2011 National Title Game to Auburn by a score of 22-19.