October 2nd, 2009 5:33 pm | by HANK STERN News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Sports, Sports

Four Thoughts After Chip Kelly's News Conference


Here are four insta-takeaways after watching Oregon football coach Chip Kelly's news conference this morning to announce the prospect that senior running back LeGarrette Blount may play this season after all.

1) Kelly never said his initial decision the day after the Boise State game was wrong. "I made the right decision Sept. 4," Kelly said.

2) Instead, Kelly says Blount's actions — including his apologies and Blount's talks with sociologist Harry Edwards as well as former NFL coach and player Tony Dungy — prompted Kelly to put a plan in place last Friday that sets up academic and behavioral benchmarks Blount now must meet if he hopes to play this season. Kelly insisted there is a "distinct possibility he [Blount] will never play football again [for Oregon]" if Blount doesn't meet those benchmarks. Kelly refused to be more specific about the benchmarks, which will inevitably prompt reporters to ask Blount about the academic part of the deal — as in "what classes are you taking and have you skipped any." Kelly said he reached his decision after talking with Edwards, Dungy and others. "I'd be the first one to tell you I don't have all the answers," Kelly said.

3) Kelly said he was neither worried whether today's announcement will lead others to question his word in the future or if it will hurt the Ducks on the field by appearing to set up a double standard. "Our team is fine," Kelly said. "They said the same thing [as me] - the ball is in LeGarrette's court."

4) As predicted here earlier this morning, there's no chance Blount comes back before the Stanford game Nov. 7.
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