Despite being just two seasons removed from a national title game appearance, the Oregon Ducks fired Mark Helfrich after a 4-8 overall record this season. Though Helfrich helped Oregon to the most successful period in the program’s history, we look forward to who will be on the sideline for the Ducks next season.
Let’s get it out of the way before anything else: yes, Chip Kelly is listed. Kelly left the Ducks program after a four-year tenure that saw the offensive guru lead Oregon to a 46-7 record and four New Year’s Six bowl appearances. Kelly is now the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers and though the team has been abysmal, he will likely at least get one more year to try to improve.
On to the more serious contenders.
The favorite to land the Oregon head job is P.J. Fleck. The current Western Michigan coach has long been the apple of Oregon’s eye. Fleck runs a flashy offensive attack, something that Oregon highly values, and has led the Broncos to an undefeated regular season behind the third-highest scoring offense in the nation. The Ducks also have a history of taking a chance and hiring up-and-coming coaches, as their past seven head coaches got their first job with the team (dating back to 1967).
Offense continues with Beau Baldwin of Eastern Washington tied for the third-best odds to land the Oregon job. Baldwin has led the Eagles to double-digit wins in four of the past five seasons behind a high-flying passing game.
An intriguing name to keep an eye on would be Scott Frost. The current UCF coach spent 2009 to 2015 with Oregon as a wide receivers coach, quarterback coach and offensive co-ordinator. Frost has said that he is not a candidate for the job, but money talks and he has a connection to the school.
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