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3-point stance: Ducks' Mark Helfrich makes tough call with Don Pellum

1. It can't be easy for Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich to declare Don Pellum's two-year stint as defensive coordinator a failure. Pellum, a former Duck himself, has been on the Oregon staff for 23 seasons. His defense led the nation in forced turnovers in 2014, when the Ducks made the playoff final. But the unit simply hasn't been as good under Pellum as under his predecessor, Nick Aliotti. Oregon's statement to demote Pellum said that Helfrich will begin a "national" search for a new coordinator. That isn't done lightly on a staff where loyalty is prized and changes are few, where Pellum is returning to his old job as linebacker coach, where, in Pellum's case, loyalty won out over ego.

2. Who says college football doesn't have a trading deadline? At the end of the day, Texas A&M sent freshman quarterback Kyler Murray to Oklahoma for senior Trevor Knight. If it were a trade, it would have made sense. The Aggies need a quarterback for 2016, and the Sooners perhaps can build around Murray for 2017 or, if the powers that be do the right thing and get Baker Mayfield a fourth year of eligibility, 2018. No, this isn't professional sports, and there aren't going to be trades. But this sure feels like one.

3. The discrepancy in practice time -- Clemson, in school, has a 20-hour limit; Alabama, not in school, doesn't -- won't affect the College Football Playoff. But it looks bad. What really looks bad is that it happened last season with Oregon (in school) and Ohio State (not), and the NCAA shrugged its shoulders. Everything should be equal for both sides. If the NCAA feels as if it would sacrifice academic integrity to waive Clemson's 20-hour rule this week, fine. Apply the limit to Alabama. Whatever -- just make it the same for both sides. Why sacrifice common sense?