Ohio State Hires UCLA Coach Chip Kelly As New Offensive Coordinator

By Dan Hope on February 9, 2024 at 8:20 pm
Chip Kelly
Kirby Lee – USA TODAY Sports

Ohio State has hired the head coach of one of its new Big Ten peers to be its new offensive coordinator.

Ohio State announced Friday night that it has hired UCLA head coach Chip Kelly as its new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

Kelly replaces Bill O’Brien, who was hired by Boston College on Friday as its new head coach.

“We are extremely excited to have Chip and his wife, Jill, joining our program,” Ryan Day said in a news release. “His experience as a head coach at Oregon, UCLA and in the NFL will bring immediate value to our entire team. I am really looking forward to reconnecting with Chip, introducing him to our staff and team and chasing a championship together.

“I would also like to wish coach Bill O’Brien and his family well as he takes over at Boston College.”

Kelly is signing a three-year contract with Ohio State. The financial terms of the contract were not immediately disclosed.

Chip Kelly’s Coaching History
Years Team Title
1990 Columbia Defensive Backs Coach/Special Teams Coordinator
1991 Columbia Outside Linebackers/Safeties Coach
1992 New Hampshire Running Backs Coach
1993 Johns Hopkins Defensive Coordinator
1994-96 New Hampshire Running Backs Coach
1997-98 New Hampshire Offensive Line Coach
1999-2006 New Hampshire Offensive Coordinator
2007-08 Oregon Offensive Coordinator
2009-12 Oregon Head Coach
2013-15 Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach
2016 San Francisco 49ers Head Coach
2018-23 UCLA Head Coach
2024- Ohio State Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks Coach

Kelly reunites with Ohio State head coach Ryan Day, who was coached by Kelly at New Hampshire, where Kelly was the offensive coordinator during Day’s playing career as a quarterback. Day also worked alongside Kelly in the NFL as the quarterbacks coach of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2015 and San Francisco 49ers in 2016, when Kelly was the head coach of both teams.

Now, Kelly will work for Day, taking on his first job as an assistant coach since he was the offensive coordinator at Oregon in 2007 and 2008.

Kelly was Oregon’s head coach from 2009-12, also calling the offensive plays for a team that ranked in the top five nationally in both total and scoring offense in each of his final three years with the Ducks. He then went on to the NFL for four years, coaching the Eagles for one season and the 49ers for one. After a year out of coaching in which he worked as an ESPN analyst, Kelly returned to the college ranks in 2018 as UCLA’s head coach.

“His experience as a head coach at Oregon, UCLA and in the NFL will bring immediate value to our entire team.”– Ryan Day on Chip Kelly

The Bruins won at least eight games in each of UCLA’s final three seasons in Westwood, but it became apparent over the past month that Kelly was looking to move on from UCLA as he interviewed for several offensive coordinator openings with NFL teams. While an NFL job didn’t materialize for Kelly, he still chose to take a step back from head coaching and leave UCLA for Ohio State.

Kelly will join an offensive coaching staff that also includes former UCLA offensive coordinator Justin Frye, who was a part of Kelly’s first four staffs at UCLA before he left to become Ohio State’s offensive line coach in 2022.

UCLA announced Friday that it has already started a national search for its new head coach after Kelly informed UCLA on Friday morning that he would be leaving the Bruins.

“As we continue preparation for our move to the Big Ten Conference later this year, it is imperative that we have the right leader in place to position the program to compete at the highest level for our student-athletes, fans and university,” said UCLA athletic director Martin Jarmond. “We are confident we will find a leader who develops young men on and off the field and embodies our True Bruin Values.”

According to The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman, Jarmond told the UCLA football team that he intends to make a hire by Tuesday.

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