Tostitos Fiesta Bowl - Oregon v Kansas State

Updated: Chip Kelly is the new coach of the Philadelphia Eagles


Apparently, Oregon coach Chip Kelly did outgrow the small pond of Eugene. So to speak.

Ten days after it was reported by multiple media outlets that Kelly would be not be the new coach of the Philadelphia Eagles — with Kelly’s own boss gushing over the coach’s honesty through the whole situation — it appears Kelly has had a change of heart.

Per ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, Kelly is the new coach of the Eagles. An announcement is TBD., and 247Sports are among the other outlets now reporting that Kelly will in fact be the coach of the Eagles. The Pac-12 Network’s Bryan Fischer reports that the deal came within the last 24 hours, meaning the Eagles made another run at Kelly after an unsuccessful coaching search.

Via Oregon’s Twitter page, Kelly informed the school he will in fact be the new coach of the Eagles.

Kelly had been linked to multiple NFL openings over the past month, including those with the Cleveland Browns and Buffalo Bills. The fourth-year coach reportedly interviewed with those organizations after the Ducks’ Fiesta Bowl win over Kansas State earlier this month and was, at one point, even said to be close to inking a deal with the Browns.

Kelly is 46-7 in four years as head coach of the Ducks with four BCS bowl appearances. Oregon’s offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich is expected to be promoted to succeed Kelly.

Oregon will face the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions — reportedly this spring — as the program continues to deal with the fallout of the Willie Lyles recruiting scandal.

Updated 12:50 p.m. ET: The Eagles have announced that Kelly is the team’s new coach in a release.

“Chip Kelly will be an outstanding head coach for the Eagles,” said  Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie. “He has a brilliant football mind. He motivates his team with his actions as well as his words. He will be a great leader for us and will bring a fresh, energetic approach to our team.”

Was Washington loss the beginning of the end of the Steve Sarkisian era at USC?

Steve Sarkisian

Steve Sarkisian’s win totals in his six previous seasons are both a positive and a negative.

On one hand, he resurrected a moribund Washington program that went 0-12 under Ty Willingham in 2008 and took them to four consecutive bowl games from 2010-2013. He won nine games his last year in Seattle, then led a talented-yet-thin USC team to a nine-win season and AP No. 20 finish in 2014.

Those are good accomplishments. But the flip side of the argument is Sarkisian has never won double-digit games in a season, something that’s a necessity to keep one’s job at USC. The Trojans’ 17-12 loss to Washington last night — at home, no less — means the road to 10 wins and a Pac-12 title will be awfully difficult.

And worse yet, there are plenty of arguments to be made Sarkisian doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt and a little more time in Los Angeles to turn things around (#SarkAfterDark, his drunken rant at a booster event, certainly doesn’t help). The reaction from national media to last night’s loss looked like this:

Mandel, in his column, argued USC is right where it was two years ago with Lane Kiffin as its coach. And there’s this embarrassing thought, that looks more and more like a truth, for Pat Haden:

This one, however, was the most damning by far for many reasons, most notably that it came at the hands of Sarkisian’s old team. The sense among many Washington fans nearly two years ago was that the Huskies managed to upgrade coaches when the school lured Chris Petersen from Boise State upon Sarkisian’s departure to USC.

They were right.

USA Today’s Dan Wolken similarly wrote that USC needs to drop Sarkisian and bring in Chip Kelly from the Philadelphia Eagles.

This is the state of USC, and it may not get better. The Trojans start a brutal three-game stretch next Saturday at Notre Dame in primetime, then welcome Utah to Los Angeles the next week. A Halloween trip to Berkeley to face Jared Goff and Cal finishes it up. There’s a very real chance USC, for all its talent and all its hype, limps into November with a 4-4 or 3-5 record.

Sarkisian will have to engineer and sustain a major turnaround in these coming weeks, otherwise he’ll give Haden all the ammo he needs to unceremoniously jettison him after two years.

Starting Navy S Kwazel Bertrand undergoes surgery, likely out for season

Kwazel Bertrand, Jacobi Owens
Associated Press
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Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.

Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.

And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.

“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”

Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.