It is said he doesn’t like to recruit, which is notable since football is still played by the players.
He is known as a guy without the most radiant of dispositions, UCLA a school that could use a little sunshine cutting through all the recent dark clouds.
His previous college job was marred by an NCAA conviction, the crime being the exact sort of misbehavior now threatening the sport of basketball to its core.
And, yet, Chip Kelly remains the people’s candidate, the people – like always – interested first in winning and then second and third in winning some more.
In the past, Kelly has talked about the importance of finding the right fit should he one day return to college. From this angle, the fit at UCLA doesn’t seem to be right, at all.
Perhaps soon Kelly could be joining the Bruins, a possibility circulating more Friday following a report that Florida was no longer pursuing the former Oregon coach.
And, if it does happen, maybe Kelly would be a wild success, his four Ducks teams going a ridiculous 46-7, with each of the final three finishing ranked in the top five nationally.
Since 1982, UCLA has finished one season among the top five, 35 years plenty of time to wait for the opportunity to hire a coach so innovative that he helped change how offenses operate.
But, whatever happens, Kelly’s undeniable attraction – this is the third consecutive season in which his eventual whereabouts has been a story in college football – is confirmation of something that need not be confirmed:
Winning, or, in this case, simply the potential of winning, rises above everything else. Yeah, like we didn’t already know that.
When Oregon was busted by the NCAA in 2013, Kelly apologized in a statement and accepted his share of the responsibility for a rule-breaking $25,000 payment made to a scouting service.
He was given an 18-month show-cause penalty, which basically banned him from coaching in college through the end of 2014, Kelly, at the time, having moved on…