Helfrich guided Oregon to the national championship game in the first-ever College Football Playoff. 

By Daniel Rapaport
January 11, 2018

The Bears have hired former Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich as offensive coordinator, reports ESPN's Adam Schefter

Helfrich, 44, will join the staff of new head coach Matt Nagy, the former Chiefs offensive coordinator who was hired to replace John Fox. Fox went 14-34 in three disappointing seasons in Chicago. 

Helfrich was the offensive coordinator at Oregon under Chip Kelly from 2009-12 then became head coach when Kelly departed to coach the Eagles. In his first season at Oregon, Helfrich guided the Ducks to the national championship in the first-ever College Football Playoff, where they were defeated 42-20 by Ohio State. 

Under Helfrich's up-tempo offense at Oregon during that national runner-up season, Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota threw for 4454 yards and 42 touchdowns as well asrushing for 770 yards and 15 touchdowns en route to the Heisman Trophy.

But Helfrich could not sustain the success of his first season and was fired by Oregon after a 4-8 2016 season, finishing with a 36-17 record in four seasons at the helm. He spent the 2017 season as a college football analyst for Fox Sports. 

In Chicago, Helfrich will be tasked with mentoring young quarterback Mitch Trubisky, who showed flashes of the arm talent that led to him being selected second overall but struggled behind a poor offensive line. The Bears averaged just 287.4 yards of total offense per game this season, the third-worst mark in the league and scored just 16.5 points per contest, the league's fourth-worst average.

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