Nothing like a good ol' coaching rumor to make things lively. We had Chip Kelly flirting with the possibility of going pro with either the Philadelphia Eagles or the Cleveland Browns. Instead he decided to stay at Oregon. Then we had Bill O'Brian flirting with the idea of going to the Cleveland Browns. Instead he decided to stay at Penn State. Now word on the street is that Norte Dame head coach Brian Kelly might be looking to go pro. Many sources from Fox Sports, NFL.com, and Sports Illustrated have all confirmed that Brian Kelly did in fact interview with the Eagles and that it is a possibility for that move.
Some might say that this scenario would happen eventually. From 1991 when he first broke in as head coach of Grand Valley State in D-II NCAA Football to present day, Brian Kelly has been at the head coaching in college football. His teams were as listed below:
* From 1991-2003: Head Coach at Grand Valley State where he had a 118-35-2 record and won 2 D-II Championships back to back in 2002 & 2003.
* From 2004-2006: Head Coach at Central Michigan University where he had a 19-16 record, including winning the 2006 Motor City Bowl against the Middle Tennessee University Blue Raider.
* From 2006-2009: Head Coach at Cincinnati University where he had a 34-6 record including 3 Bowl Appearances, winning 2 Bowl games (International Bowl in '06 and Papajohns.com Bowl in '07).
* From 2010-Present: At Notre Dame University where he currently has a 28-11 record, including winning the Hyundai Sun Bowl in '10 and recently losing in the BCS Championship game to Alabama.
Overall, he has a 199-67-2 record with 7 Bowl Game appearances and 3 Bowl Game victories.
But in the same token, not that many college coaches have had that much success at the Pro level. Steve Spurrier helped build the Florida Gators in a powerhouse during the 90s but then faltered when he coached at the Redskins for two seasons from '02-'03. Nick Saban was treated like a deity at LSU from 2000-2004 but he was treated like a schmuck from '05-'06 down in Miami with the Dolphins. And who could forget when Bobby Petrino went pro during the '07 with the Atlanta Falcons after making the Louisville Cardinals into a powerhouse in the Big East, up and quit on his team after 13 weeks in the pro. And if you want something close to home for the Fighting Irish faithful, remember Lou Holtz? He may have been a god at Notre Dame from '86-'96 but many New York Jets fans remember him as a flop during the '76 season when he went 3-10 and quit before the final game of that season.
So folks, what do you thing is a good idea. Should Brian Kelly go pro after having so much success at the collegiate level? Or do you believe he'll be like another big time college coach who will flounder from the pressure of being an NFL head coach?
-Ryan L. Fox
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