There will always be a siren call for Chip Kelly to come back to college, even if we never know what the 49ers coach is actually considering. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported Thursday there were indeed many folks who believed Kelly would bail on the NFL after this year and return to the college coaching ranks.
Asked about that report on Friday during his press conference, Kelly at first jokingly denied that he had any interest in leaving.
“Unless the media has an opportunity for me somewhere,” Kelly said. “I’ll always explore those opportunities.”
Then, to make sure no idiots started asking why was he joking, Kelly provided a serious version of his response.
“I’m not going anywhere,” Kelly said.
It’s very easy for Kelly to say that now. It’s what he has to say. Can you imagine him going “Well, look, I’m not leaving for SMU, but Texas …”? Clearly he isn’t going to say that. And he’s not sitting around worrying too much about open jobs before they’re open — he’s sitting around trying to win some football games.
But if Texas joins LSU as an open job and major dominoes start to fall, it isn’t hard to imagine Kelly looking at his depleted roster in San Francisco and contemplating a job where he is personally capable of influencing the roster thanks to recruiting.
It’s also possible a miserable season for Kelly in the Bay Area results in changes that are out of his control. There’s been very little consistency in San Francisco since Jim Harbaugh left, outside of consistently losing. Management could feel heat and be forced to make changes or management could even be the changes involved.
There is a lot to play out before the coaching season comes and things get really silly. But always remember this: the No. 1 rule in coaching searches is anything’s on the table, regardless of what you’re told.
49ers coach Chip Kelly on returning to college next year: ‘I’m not going anywhere’ – CBSSports.com