There could be two former Oregon head coaches on the visiting sideline Nov. 3 at Autzen Stadium.
UCLA coach Chip Kelly has offered Mark Helfrich a job as the Bruins’ offensive coordinator, according to a report by FootballScoop.com.
Kelly posted a 46-7 overall record, including a 33-3 mark in the Pac-12, at Oregon from 2009-12.
Helfrich, who was Kelly’s offensive coordinator, had a 37-16 record after being elevated to head coach for four seasons (2013-16). He was fired following the Ducks’ 4-8 finish in 2016 and worked as an analyst on Fox Sports 1 this season.
“The short answer is: I don’t know. The cheating answer is: It depends,” Helfrich said of a possible return to the sideline during an interview last November on The Audible podcast. “It has been a lot of fun doing what I’m doing now, kind of getting the football fix, getting to be a much better father, hopefully.
“And then at the same time I do miss the staff, obviously miss game day. That’s kind of a jones that’s hard to find. Then being around the players and affecting them in a positive way is irreplaceable.”
Before hosting UCLA on Nov. 3, the Ducks play at Arizona on Oct. 27. Helfrich has been mentioned as a potential candidate to replace former Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez, who was fired on Tuesday.
Helfrich’s 2014 Oregon team defeated Rodriguez’s Wildcats in the 2014 Pac-12 championship game en route to the College Football Playoff, in which the Ducks lost to Ohio State in the title game.
Two other former Oregon assistants, Jerry Azzinaro (defensive line) and Don Pellum (linebackers), have also been hired by Kelly at UCLA.
Jimmie Dougherty, who was briefly Willie Taggart’s wide receivers coach at Oregon before leaving for UCLA, will be retained by Kelly, according to reports.