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Chip Kelly passes on NFL, makes Oregon AD 'ecstatic'

Chip Kelly's annual flirtation with the NFL ended the same way it did a year ago, with the coach heading back to the University of Oregon with a belly full of free dinners and little more.

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This was not in the script for the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles, two teams that believed they had a shot to bring Kelly to the NFL. The outcome made Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens a very happy man.

"Obviously, we're ecstatic that Coach Kelly decided to remain at the University of Oregon," Mullens said Monday, according to The Oregonian. "We've had unprecedented success over the last four years, and that's a tribute to his innovative style."

Kelly has built Oregon's program into a perennial contender, taking the Ducks to BCS bowl games in four consecutive seasons.

Mullens was asked about the reports that Oregon booster and Nike boss Phil Knight played a role in Kelly staying put.

"I'll say this: There were numerous reports about a lot of things, and as we sit here today, a lot of them were inaccurate," Mullens said.

Mullens anticipates Kelly being courted by the NFL again if his success continues at the college level.

"If we're winning 11, 12, 13, 14 games," Mullens said, "it's something we'll deal with."

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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