Oregon AD: 'The expectations for this program have shifted'
Posted by: Chris Vannini on Wednesday January 16, 2013
Posted by: Chris Vannini on January 16, 2013
Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens said he was surprised that Chip Kelly would be accepting the head coaching job with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Kelly had told him last week that he would be staying at Oregon, but Kelly changed his mind.
"He relayed to me that he's thought long and hard over the last 10 days, that in fact it was a challenge he always wanted to take, which he shared with you me, and that he wasn't sure if that opportunity would present itself again," Mullens said regarding what Kelly told him Wednesday. "So he felt like this was the right one at the right time."
Mullens said he was not "relieved" when Kelly said he was staying last week. He wouldn't be relieved until all the NFL jobs were filled.
Moving forward, Mullens said there isn't a timetable for a replacement, but with Signing Day three weeks away, time will have to be of the essence. There have been reports that offensive coordinator / quarterbacks coach Mark Helfrich would be the replacement, but Mullens says he will look at both external and internal candidates.
According to state law, a qualified minority candidate must be interviewed for the job. Mullens made it clear that Oregon is looking for a top candidate.
"The offense has been successful, but that's not the only requirement," he said. "What we want is someone who understands the culture. It is unique here, not only within our football program, but within our community. We want someone who has proven excellence, has been around winning programs, who knows what it takes, because the expectations for this program have shifted.
"We want to compete for Pac-12 championships and we want to be in BCS bowls. We want someone who understands what that takes, from A to Z, form recruiting, to creating a culture of academic excellence, to understanding the role of that team in this department and this community, and of course, on-field success."
Chris Vannini is the lead writer for CoachingSearch.com and has covered Michigan State sports for The State News, The Oakland Press and MLive.com. He writes a weekly column for the Detroit Free Press on behalf of SB Nation. Vannini lives in Big Ten country, so his foot speed is far from SEC caliber, but his pulse on coaches is hard to match. Be sure to follow @CoachingBuzz on twitter and send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org