UCLA football will head into its first year as a Big Ten program with a new coach for a pretty unique reason. According to multiple reports, Bruins coach Chip Kelly will leave the program after six seasons at the helm for another job. The catch: He’s going elsewhere in the conference and taking a demotion, as he’s set to become the next offensive coordinator at Ohio State.
BREAKING: UCLA’s Chip Kelly is expected to become the new OC at Ohio State, per source. Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day played for Kelly at UNH and later coached with him at three stops. https://t.co/PDDOB76rDq
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) February 9, 2024
Sources: Ohio State is expected to target UCLA coach Chip Kelly as the school's next offensive coordinator. A deal could come together as soon as today.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) February 9, 2024
The Buckeyes’ offensive coordinator position opened up earlier in the day when Bill O’Brien — who Ryan Day hired earlier this offseason to take over the offense — left to become the next head coach at Boston College. From the moment that happened, Kelly’s name was linked to the position as he has an extensive history with Day (Kelly was the offensive coordinator at New Hampshire while Day played there, and Day served as Kelly’s QB coach for a year with the Philadelphia Eagles). It was a bit unusual, because while head coaches leaving to take coordinator jobs elsewhere is nothing new, doing it within the same conference (or from one Power 5 school to another) is not something you ever really see.
Kelly’s been on the hot seat in recent years at UCLA, although he’s always managed to avoid getting fired and was slated to return next season — he accrued a 35-34 record with the Bruins. Instead, he’s going to make his way to Columbus.