TAMPA — Who says NFL coaches don't have to do any recruiting?
Just 10 days before college football's national signing day, new Bucs coach Dirk Koetter convinced Southern Mississippi coach Todd Monken to leave the Golden Eagles and join his Bucs staff as offensive coordinator and receivers coach.
"I am very excited to add a coach with the type of experience and tenacity that Todd brings," Koetter said Sunday in a statement. "I have always been impressed with his approach to the game, as well as his ability to teach concepts and get the best out of players."
Monken was the receivers coach in Jacksonville from 2007-09 when Koetter was the Jaguars' offensive coordinator. This is another Koetter reunion with a former colleague, as with defensive coordinator Mike Smith. Koetter has said he will still call offensive plays as head coach.
"Todd also happens to be a terrific receivers coach with a proven track record of helping his players reach their true potential," Koetter said. "We are fortunate to have him join our staff."
Monken, 49, made $700,000 this season at Southern Miss and was in negotiations to land a new contract. His team went 9-5 this past season after going 4-20 his first two seasons, giving him a 13-25 overall record as a head coach.
The Bucs have four coaches who were on the 2007 Jaguars staff, Koetter's first in the NFL. He was offensive coordinator, Smith was defensive coordinator, Monken was receivers coach, and Mark Duffner was linebackers coach, the same role he will have with Tampa Bay. The Jags went 11-5 and won a playoff game that season; Jacksonville hasn't gone better than 8-8 or made the playoffs in eight years since.
More hires: Brett Maxie, who spent 13 years in the NFL as a player and another 16 as an assistant, joins Koetter's staff as defensive backs coach.
Maxie, 54, has spent the past two seasons as an assistant at Vanderbilt, but he spent the previous 16 years in the NFL, with the Titans, Cowboys, Dolphins, Falcons, 49ers and Panthers, as an assistant. In his new job, he will work with Jon Hoke, Tampa Bay's new secondary coach.
Maxie, who played defensive back, had 23 interceptions, including three returned for touchdowns, from 1985-97, mostly with the Saints. He has not worked with Koetter or Smith but worked with new special teams coordinator Nate Kaczor with the Titans in 2012-13.
Koetter has kept several members of Lovie Smith's staff — Mike Bajakian (quarterbacks coach), Tim Spencer (running backs), Jon Embree (tight ends), George Warhop (offensive line), Butch Barry (assistant offensive line), Paul Spicer (assistant defensive line) and Carlos Polk (assistant special teams).
Koetter has replaced most of the defensive staff. In addition to Mike Smith, Hoke and Duffner, Jay Hayes is also a newcomer as defensive line coach.
Contact Greg Auman at [email protected] and (813) 310-2690. Follow @gregauman.