As if Jim Harbaugh didn’t have enough to prepare for on Saturday, now there’s rumbling that this may be the week LeGarrette Blount rejoins the Ducks. Of course Stanford’s head coach shouldn’t fret too much; anyone who’s been following college football at all (what do you mean you haven’t?) knows that Oregon is doing passably well without him.
We knew that coach Chip Kelly was contemplating bringing Blount back at some point. The bigger question is, why? Is it wise to roll a grenade into the middle of a seven-game winning streak? Some say it’s for money, others that Kelly wants a hole card as the Ducks move closer to the really important games. Or, could he really just have the kid’s best interests at heart? Only Chip knows for sure, and he’s playing this one cagey.
The PORTLAND OREGONIAN says that Blount met Sunday with Pac-10 Conference commissioner Larry Scott, Oregon athletic director Mike Bellotti “and others,” and that an announcement could come at any time. Some were speculating that it would come today. But Kelly shot that down.
“When we have an announcement, we’ll make it,” Kelly said.
If and when Kelly, Bellotti, university president Richard Lariviere and Scott sign off on the reinstatement, the announcement will come. But on Monday, it was business as usual — or at least as it has been since Blount threw the infamous punch at Boise State on Sept. 3.
“Nothing’s really changed right now,” Kelly said.
Blount worked out with the scout team, wearing the No. 7 jersey of Stanford’s Toby Gerhart, and he did do some extra, post-practice conditioning with running backs coach Gary Campbell.
Meanwhile, Blount’s replacement, freshman LaMichael James, was just named Pac-10 offensive player of the week. James ran for 183 yards in the Ducks’ 47-20 win over USC on Saturday.
If that’s not a compelling reason to keep Blount in mothballs for the time being, what is?