According to multiple reports on Saturday, including sources close to The Oregonian, current Oregon linebackers coach Don Pellum has been promoted to defensive coordinator, filling the position left by the resignation of Nick Aliotti.
The Ducks are expected to make a formal announcement Sunday or Monday.
Aliotti officially retired after the team's victory over Texas in the Alamo Bowl to end the 2013 season. He had coached at UO for 24 seasons, including 17 as the team's defensive coordinator. While Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich reportedly considered hiring from outside the Oregon program, he ultimately kept up the Ducks' tradition of promoting from within.
Pellum played linebacker for the Ducks through the 1984 season and graduated in 1985. Following his graduation, he immediately joined the Oregon coaching staff as a graduate assistant. Since then, Pellum has coached the Ducks every season except for 1987, when he coached at Willamette University in Salem, and 1990-92, when he was an assistant athletic director for student services at the University of California.
Pellum has worked with various defensive groups for the Ducks over his two-plus decades with the program, most recently with the linebackers. Pellum is also a major contributor to Oregon's recruiting efforts.
"I think he's a good choice because he's coached several positions on the defense," a source within the athletic department reportedly told The Oregonian Saturday morning. "The only thing he hasn't coached is the secondary, and I think he's a student of the game and he's a hard working guy who really knows what the defense is all about. I'm sure he's got a flavor he'd like to add to it, too, and he's a smart guy.
Helfrich also considered defensive backs coach John Neal for the vacancy.
Erick Chinander will reportedly return to Oregon and take over Pellum's role as the team's linebackers coach. Chinander was a defensive intern for Oregon for three years, before leaving with Chip Kelly to be an assistant defensive line coach for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2013.