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Oregon names Don Pellum successor to Nick Aliotti as defensive coordinator

Nick Bromberg
Dr. Saturday

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(USA Today Sports Images)

Oregon stayed in-house for Nick Aliotti's replacement.

Aliotti retired after 17 seasons as the team's defensive coordinator after the Alamo Bowl and on Tuesday, Oregon announced that linebackers coach Don Pellum would be its new defensive coordinator.

“This is a challenge I welcome with open arms,” Pellum said in a statement. “I have been fortunate to enjoy a long relationship at an institution that means a lot to me as well as the luxury to work with a lot of class coaches and athletes. I certainly have benefited from the knowledge handed down to me from numerous head coaches and coordinators but head into this next phase of my career anxious to implement ideas of my own.

“I am grateful to Coach (Mark) Helfrich and the University of Oregon for the confidence they have bestowed upon me and am excited to add to the success this program has enjoyed.”

He'll continue to coach Oregon's inside and weakside linebackers.

Pellum played at Oregon and has been with the team since 1993. In addition to coaching linebackers, he's also coached safeties and the defensive line in his Oregon tenure. His elevation to the defensive coordinator role continues Oregon's trend of in-house hires.

Chip Kelly was Oregon's offensive coordinator when he took over for Mike Bellotti in 2009. When Kelly departed for the NFL and the Philadelphia Eagles in 2013, Helfrich was promoted to head coach. He had assumed the offensive coordinator duties when Kelly became Oregon's coach.

Last season, Oregon's defense gave up 20.5 points-per-game and 4.6 yards-per-play, which was seventh in the nation. The Ducks beat Texas 30-7 in the Alamo Bowl on Dec. 30.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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