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Looks like the Ducks got the man they wanted all along. With the basketball team beating top 25 teams, Chip Kelly seeking "greener" pastures, and the promotions of Helfrich and Frost, the off season for the Ducks has started off very quickly. Lots of quack out there, so let's jump in:
- As many expected, the Ducks promoted offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich to head coach on Sunday. Here is a video highlight of the press conference if you missed it.
- Apparently the players are on board with this hire as they gave Helf a standing ovation when he told them he was going to be their next head coach. To me that is the biggest ringing endorsement. Kelly has repeatedly talked about how the guys on this team are what made it difficult for him to leave, and if they want Helf to lead them next season, then I'm on board with that.
- Interesting that Helfrich calls the Oregon job his "pinnacle." I don't doubt his sincerity in his comment especially considering his past, but I hope that is coach speak. First of all, I want the pinnacle to be coaching at Oregon and taking it to its greatest heights. I want leading his team and the fans that follow it to places they've never been before to be his pinnacle. Not just getting the job. Part of what I loved about Kelly was knowing that he won't be here forever. Innovation is never comfortable with where it is. It is always looking for where to go next. Personally, I hope Helfrich is so successful that he too starts hearing the siren's song of coaching at the highest level. We'll see.
- Speaking of Helf's past, here is a really good snapshot of his background.
- Doesn't it bother anyone else that even Canzano is endorsing this hire?
- In basketball news, guess who's leading the Pac again? Just like football, everyone else is looking up at the Ducks. Oregon knocked off Ucla on the road, and with Uw losing to a Utah team that had never won a Pac 12 road game, the Ducks are the only undefeated team left in conference play. Dana Altman is putting together something special with this team, and the sooner fans realize it the sooner they get to enjoy this ride.
- Here is your weekly "the women's basketball team still hasn't won a conference game" link.
Other Duck related news and notes:
- LaMichael James scored his first NFL touchdown in the NFC Championship game this weekend. LMJ's postseasons over the last four years look like this: Rose Bowl, BCS National Championship, Rose Bowl, Super Bowl. That's damn impressive.
- Speaking of the Super Bowl, guess which college team has the second most number of players playing it?
- Chip Kelly got paid. Can't blame the man for not turning down that type of scratch.
Finally, it is MLK day, so I hope many of you enjoy the time off. Here is a copy of Martin Luther King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." I will leave you with this quote"
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
Let us all continue to try and seek out the injustices in our lives and affect them directly. Go Ducks.