New Hampshire assistant will direct offense at Oregon

Updated: February 10, 2007, 3:16 PM ET
Associated Press

EUGENE, Ore. -- Chip Kelly, an assistant at Division I-AA New Hampshire for 14 years, has been named the new offensive coordinator at Oregon.

Kelly replaces Gary Crowton, who was Oregon's offensive coordinator for two seasons and installed the Ducks' spread-option offense. Crowton left for the offensive coordinator's job at Louisiana State.

Most recently Kelly served as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Wildcats, who averaged 35.3 points per game and 401 yards of offense this past season.

"First of all, this is exciting because of everything I've heard about the football program at the University of Oregon," Kelly said. "It's just a dynamic place. Secondly, the opportunity to coach in the Pac-10, which I believe to be one of the top conferences in the country."

In 2005, Wildcats quarterback Ricky Santos established school records with 39 touchdown passes and 3,797 passing yards. He had 3,125 passing yards and 29 touchdowns last season, and has 10,240 career yards and 99 touchdowns going into his senior season.

"The proven track record of success of the quarterback points to strong coaching and a very good foundation from Chip," Oregon coach Mike Bellotti said.

The Ducks finished last season at 7-6, including a 38-8 loss to Brigham Young in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Kelly, 43, has been offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at his alma mater since 1999. His offenses have averaged more than 400 yards of offense for seven of the last eight seasons.

"My philosophy has been to coach an attacking style of football and stretch the defenses in as many different ways as you can," Kelly said. "You have to get the ball into the hands of your playmakers and let them operate in order to be successful."

Last season New Hampshire finished with a 9-4 record and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA I-AA playoffs, losing to eventual national runner-up Massachusetts, 24-17.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press