SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) ― Former Oregon football coach Mike Bellotti said Stanford has not reached out to him about its coaching vacancy and he hadn’t tried to contact Cardinal officials.
“Stanford’s a great place, a great institution and certainly with Andrew Luck coming back, somebody is going to have a great time coaching him next year,” Bellotti said.
Bellotti is now working as an analyst for ESPN and will be part of the coverage for the BCS title game Monday between No. 1 Auburn and No. 2 Oregon.
He told reporters that if he was at Stanford, he would hire Boise State coach Chris Petersen. There have been reports linking Petersen, a former assistant under Bellotti at Oregon, to the Stanford search for a replacement for Jim Harbaugh.
Bellotti coached at Oregon for 14 years before resigning after the 2008 season and hiring Chip Kelly as his successor. He said he would be interested in coaching again.
“I talked to several people this year about jobs across the country and none of them quite were what I want,” Bellotti said. “I would love to talk to people.”
The Ducks went to 12 bowl games under Bellotti and won 116 games before he stepped aside to become full-time athletic director. A year later Bellotti left Oregon to work for ESPN.
He left behind a healthy program.
Bellotti figured he helped recruit about 80 percent of Oregon’s roster, but that doesn’t mean he believes he should get any accolades for the Ducks being a victory away from their first national championship.
“I deserve absolutely zero credit,” he said. “I didn’t coach anything this year. I put these guys in place a couple years ago and they have done a great job of building on that.”
Kelly had only been offensive coordinator at Oregon for two years when Bellotti promoted him, passing over some other assistants who had been at Oregon for more than 20 years.
Bellotti said the decision was not immediately embraced by some of the others on the staff.
“Absolutely, but certainly the last two years have borne out that it was a good decision,” he said.
Kelly is 22-3 with two Pac-10 titles.
“Anytime people work at a university for 15 or 20 and feel like they have been an important cog in what’s happened they feel like they should be considered for those jobs and I did do that, I considered them.
“Some people said, ‘Well, why didn’t you interview me,’ and I said, ‘What do you think I’ve been doing for the last 15, 20 years?’”
Bellotti said he thought Kelly could be a “difference-maker.”
And in the end, the longtime assistants such as defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti, bought into what Kelly wanted.
“I think they felt like, ‘OK, we don’t know Chip, but let’s give him a chance, he’s our boss now,’” Bellotti said.
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