Sports Illustrated’s Peter King devoted a hearty chunk of his weekly MMQB column to the Buccaneers coaching hire. You can check out the link here, and it really is worth the read. King spends most of his time lauding the hire, he really likes Greg Schiano and puts a ton of stock in Bill Belichick’s praise of him.
But he also mentions several other good Schiano-related tidbits. Most notably is Schiano is intent on hiring Butch Davis to be his defensive coordinator. When I initially wrote about potential assistants and coordinators, I mentioned Davis but also that I wasn’t sure he would be receptive. Schiano, though, would know best and according to King really wants Davis on his staff.
Davis struck out as a head coach in Cleveland, but gave Schiano his shot as D-coordinator as the head coach of Miami and is still, much like Dave Wannstedt, a premiere defensive coach. Schiano would help alleviate some of the doubts about his experience by adding Davis, and the defense would certainly be better for it. Personally, I hope Schiano gets Davis. That would be a major victory for the young head coach.
King also touched on Schiano’s relationship with Joe Paterno and his connection with paralyzed Rutgers player Eric LeGrand.
“Thursday was one of the most exciting days of my life, getting this job, and also one of the saddest, because I missed Joe’s service,” he said. “I learned so much from Joe. Like, ‘The only bad decision is indecision.’ I can’t tell you how significant a statement that is.”
Schiano and his wife travelled to Penn State on Tuesday to pay their respects, but considering he started on Joe Pa’s staff I’m sure it was extremely bittersweet for him to have to miss the memorial.
As for LeGrand, Schiano and his family had become almost a surrogate family for the young man. When asked by one of his children what he would do about Eric, Schiano told them:
“I told the kid we’d bring Eric down to Tampa, he’ll stay at the house and we’ll turn him into a Bucs fan.”