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Chip Kelly on Boise State: “Because Someone Beat Somebody a Year Ago Doesn’t Mean Anything”

The Oregon Ducks are first in every one of the human polls. They’re second in the first Bowl Championship Series standings this year. On all fronts, the Ducks are ahead of Boise State. Many people want to cry foul over that fact. They love to argue that the Broncos beat the Ducks last year, so Boise State should be ahead of them. The problem is, some of those same folks are those who argue, early in the college football season, that last year’s accomplishments shouldn’t count for anything. The bottom line is, the human polls all ask voters to base their rankings off of this year’s results. If you want to try to make an argument for Boise State being better than Oregon this year, that’s fine. But don’t bring up last year’s game. And make sure you check out Oregon’s offense. You won’t be disappointed. Oregon coach Chip Kelly joined ESPN Radio with The Herd to discuss why  his offense is working so well, whether Boise State belongs in the discussion of the national championship, if this year’s Ducks team is significantly better than last year’s, how much of the success is due to athletes and how much of it is due to scheme, whether he’s got a favorite amongst the bevy of Ducks uniform options and the NFL’s added penalties for illegal hits.

On his no huddle offense working in tandem with his team’s conditioning:

“That’s part of what we do. We think our conditioning is one of the strengths of this program and we practice at that tempo. We actually practice at a faster tempo than we play at. The referees slow us down a little bit. But that’s part of what we do, we try to wear teams down.”

On Boise State’s place in the topic of the national championship:

“I think Boise should be in the discussion. I think it’s a great football program. I think Chris Petersen has done a fantastic job, but I would caution anybody to compare different years. This team we have this year is totally different than the team we had last year. It’s a different dynamic and a group of leaders. I don’t think you can compare year-to-year when you’re talking about one team or another team. Because someone beat somebody a year ago doesn’t mean anything.”

On whether this team is significantly better than last year’s Oregon team:

“I don’t know if it’s significantly better, but I believe we’re better overall just because of the makeup of our team and their mindset.”

On how much of the success at Oregon is the athletes and how much is the scheme:

“I think we don’t get caught up in that because, to me, it’s always about the players. I think the one thing that probably gets lost in this thing is that, who makes these players 5-star players? That’s where I think some of this stuff gets overblown. We have four players right now in the NFL, defensive backs: Walter Thurmond, Patrick Chung, Jairus Byrd and T.J. Ward. They were all either 1-star or 2-star recruits, but by the time they were done playing here, they were all good enough to get drafted in the first two rounds of the NFL.”

On whether he has a favorite uniform combination:

“No. I really don’t. Whatever works. I think a lot’s made of it, and that’s good, because it’s something to talk about. But it’s not about the uniform, it’s about the players in the uniform.”

On the NFL adding suspensions as penalties for illegal hits:

“Obviously, I think player safety is first and foremost. We had a young man get hit in the Washington State game that was something when you see it in person, it’s wow. It’s tough. I think sometimes they say it’s easy and you can train it, but for some of these guys it’s like trying to learn how to walk again.”

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