Chip Kelly signs new four-year contract with UCLA

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Chip Kelly led UCLA to its best finish in years this past season, and now he’s being rewarded.

The Bruins and Kelly agreed upon a new four-year contract on Friday, Bruce Feldman of The Athletic first reported. UCLA confirmed the news. It comes after Kelly steered UCLA to an 8-4 season in 2021, its best record since 2014 and its first winning season since 2015.

Kelly has demonstrated consistent growth since arriving on campus, as following a 3-9 inaugural season in 2018, he went 4-8 before finishing 3-4 in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. The Bruins took a considerable leap this season, jumping to 8-4 and a second-place finish in the Pac-12 South.

UCLA led the Pac-12 in scoring in 2021 with 36.5 points per game, also good for 13th in the nation. Those numbers have also steadily increased during Kelly’s tenure, going from 24.6 points per game in 2018 to 26.7 in 2019, before then leaping all the way to 35.4 in 2020.

Kelly began his coaching career as an assistant at Columbia in 1990 before joining the staff at New Hampshire, his alma mater, in 1992. He briefly was the defensive coordinator at Johns Hopkins in 1993 but returned to New Hampshire by the following season. He rose the ranks to become to offensive coordinator by 1999, a position he would hold for eight years.

In 2007, Kelly became the offensive coordinator at Oregon, one of UCLA’s Pac-12 foes. He was promoted to head coach by 2009 and then jumped to the NFL as the coach of the Eagles. He was in Philadelphia for three years before spending one year as the coach of the 49ers, who fired him after the 2016 season. He took one year off before becoming the Bruins’ leader in 2018.

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