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#pounditMonday, January 25, 2021

Report: Florida vetting Chip Kelly as head coach candidate

Chip Kelly 49ers

Could Chip Kelly be the next head coach at Florida? He reportedly is in the mix for the job.

The Gators fired Jim McElwain two weeks ago and have gone 0-2 under interim coach Randy Shannon. They’re in the market for a new head coach and are in the process of examining candidates. Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel names Kelly, Scott Frost and Dan Mullen as the top three candidates for the job.

In fact, Thamel says Florida has begun vetting Kelly by making “calls to NFL executives to do general background on Kelly and exploration of his NCAA issues at Oregon.”

Kelly is one of the biggest names in all of coaching. He is sitting out the season as a coach after being fired following a 2-14 showing with the 49ers last year. However, he went an incredible 46-7 in four seasons at Oregon, taking the Ducks to new heights, including the national championship game. He also went 10-6 in each of his first two seasons with the Eagles.

Kelly left Oregon amid an investigation into violations, which led to him receiving an 18-month show cause penalty. That matter is not expected to be a huge deterrent for teams interested in hiring him.

Thamel believes that the timing of what Florida does will tip their hand about their rankings of coaching candidates. He says that if they want Kelly, they can reach a deal with him in the near future. However, if they prefer Frost, they would likely wait until after UCF finishes its regular season out of respect for the coach’s pursuit of an undefeated season in Orlando. Mullen has enjoyed tremendous success at Mississippi State, but he is well compensated and has rebuffed interest from other programs in the past.

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