I’ve been on the road quite a bit and haven’t really gotten a feel for what Tampa Bay fans think of the Buccaneers’ coaching search.
But I was e-mailing back and forth with “The Fabulous Sports Babe’’ of ESPN Tampa Bay Radio (1040 AM) this morning and she said her callers aren’t excited about who the Bucs are talking to.
That’s understandable. Mike Sherman, Jerry Gray, Brad Childress, Wade Phillips and Marty Schottenheimer aren’t exactly Bill Cowher, Tony Dungy or Bill Parcells. Sherman, Childress, Phillips and Schottenheimer have been moderately successful in previous stops as head coaches, but none of them have won a Super Bowl. Gray, Tennessee’s defensive coordinator, never has been a head coach.
But it doesn’t look like Cowher or Parcells want to coach and Jeff Fisher, the hottest coaching candidate this year, isn’t coming to the Bucs.
They’re not going to get someone who is going to excite the vast majority of the fan base, but that is not entirely a bad thing. What is clear is the Bucs are looking for someone with extensive experience.
Gray’s a longtime assistant and the other four have plenty of experience. That’s what this young team needs right now. The Bucs apparently are going after the opposite of what they just had. They fired Raheem Morris, who didn’t have a ton of experience and wasn’t mature enough in his first stint as a head coach.
Going forward, the Bucs need maturity and experience. They also need structure and discipline. Sherman, Gray, Childress, Phillips and Schottenheimer may not wow fans.
But all of them are experienced and mature. Even more than “the wow factor,’’ experience, maturity and a steady hand at the top is what the Bucs need most.
Sherman, Gray, Childress, Phillips and Schottenheimer all fit the profile of coaches that could bring order to a franchise that had none in the 2011 season. In the long run, that profile could be better than bringing in a coach who can wow the fans.