Bucs lose Joe Barry to USC; name LBs, DBs coaches
Joe Barry is going back to college.
The Bucs released Barry from his contract so he can rejoin former defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin at Southern Cal to coach linebackers. Barry had one more year left on his contract that prevented him from taking another job in the NFL or college.
But the Bucs decided not to enforce that clause to allow Barry to sign a three-year deal with the Trojans, where he was a team captain and graduate assistant coach.
"It was a tough decision, especially leaving Tampa,'' Barry said. "Our family loves living here. The fans have been unbelieveable. We've had some good times, obviously, with the Super Bowl year, and we've kicked a lot of (butt). Even though last year was difficult, it was still special to be able to walk out onto Raymond James every Sunday.
"But (USC) made me an offer I couldn't refuse. I think SC couldn't have hired a better head coach to replace Pete Carroll than Lane Kiffin, and with Monte there, and the fact that I played there and my first coaching job was there, it just was the right thing for me and my family.''
Bucs defensive backs coach Joe Baker will take Barry's position and coach linebackers. Baker coached linebackers with the Denver Broncos.
The Bucs have hired former assistant Jimmy Lake as a defensive backs coach. He held the same position with the Lions in 2008 and spent two years as the Bucs assistant defensive backs coach. The moves were announced Tuesday at the Senior Bowl by general manager Mark Dominik.
The Trojans program has been a launching pad for coaching careers. Offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates joined Carroll with the Seahawks. Former offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian is the head coach of the Washington Huskies. Lane Kiffin, who was the offensive coordinator at USC, has already been hired as a head coach with the Raiders and the University of Tennessee
"The reason behind it was not only Monte Kiffin and all the years of service that he brought to the football team, but Joe Barry was a player at USC, a captain at USC, his wife is from there," Dominik said. "So in just talking through that with Joe and Coach (Raheem) Morris, we decided to let him have that opportunity, which was something that he wanted."
The Bucs are still interviewing candidates for two vacancies on the staff -- quarterbacks coach and wide receivers coach. The Bucs decided not to renew the contract of receivers coach Richard Mann. Dominik said Tuesday that the team had decided to go in another direction at that position. He indicated they are considering coaches from college football, the NFL and possibly former players such as wide receivers Ike Hilliard and Keenan McCardell.
--RICK STROUD, Times staff writer