How Will Oregon Fair Without Chip Kelly?

Oregon will look to keep the nations top scoring offense of 2012 on track in 2013 after the departure of Chip Kelly to the Philadelphia Eagles. TSD's Eric Oslund takes a look at their ability to do just that.

Over the past four seasons Chip Kelly has led the University of Oregon Ducks to be one of the premier and most offensively explosive teams in college football. In his four years at Oregon he has recorded a 46-7 (.868) mark, won three consecutive Pac-12 titles, led his team to four BCS berths and ended the year with three consecutive top-five finishes.

Kelly, however, has now left for the NFL and is the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles at the start of the 2013 season. In his time at Oregon he put together one of the most dangerous offenses in the nation, coming in as the top scoring offense in 2012.

The man inheriting that prolific scoring offense is the former offensive coordinator, Mark Helfrich. Helfrich has been the coordinator for Kelly since he took over as head coach in 2009, so he seemed the perfect candidate to take over as head coach and keep the offense rolling. Oregon also has had the reputation of hiring its coordinators once the head coaches leave, as they have not hired a coach outside of their program since 1977.

This usually helps with consistency on the field, and there should be no problem keeping the offense going in the coming year since Helfrich will be taking over a team with 15 returning starters from a 12-1 team. This will, however, be the first head coaching opportunity for the new coach, who has experience as offensive coordinator at Colorado and Oregon.

It is yet to be seen if Oregon will be able to have the same success with Helfrich as it did with Kelly. One thing that could stand in the way of his success is possible punishment from the NCAA for "major violations." If anyone can keep the team on track though, it seems as though it would be the new man in charge.

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