Originally posted on The Herd's Word  |  Last updated 1/26/12

After backing an Armored truck up to Chip Kelly’s front door, only to receive a polite refusal, the Tampa Bay Bucaneers look like they’ve finally found their man. It was once again at the college level but this time it was at the oposite end of the country.

Greg Schiano has agreed to become the next head coach of the Bucs, replacing Raheem Morris, who -after as promising finish to the end of the 2010 season as well as a strong start this past season- was fired following a disappointing 4-12 season that saw the Bucs lose their final 9 games of the season.

Schiano made a name for himself at the college level while compiling and coaching one of the quickest, most athletic and violent defensive teams in the country while at the University of Miami from 1999-2000. Schiano’s defenses were widely regarded as an NFL breeding ground and players like LB Dan Morgan and future Hall of Famer Ed Reed were some of his disciples. His success at Miami along with his lifelong New Jersey routes made him one of the lead candidates for the Rutgers job following the 2000 season.

Schiano took over a program that wasn’t only a joke in the Northeast but nationwide. After struggling to form an offensive identity in his first two seasons (3-20), Schiano got his own recruits on campus and started to change the programs identity. By keeping in-state players at home, Schiano was able to build his program and more importantly didn’t allow other Big East coaches to pillage his own backyard.

2006 was the climax for Schiano’s career as well as the Rutgers football program in the last 60 years. The Scarlet Knights opened the season with a surprising 21-16 win over North Carolina behind sophomore running back Ray Rice, who Schiano would to national notoriety for the rest of the season.

During the magical run of ‘06 included a couple Thursday Night games that put the Rutgers programo n the map. The Scarlet Nights would rise all the way up to #7 in the Associated Press poll. Like many coaches that have brought teams from the dumps to the spotlight, Schiano became a rising star in the coaching community. His name was brought up each of the past two times the Miami head job had a vacancy and many had him tabbed as Joe Paterno’s successor up until a few years ago.

Now the Tampa Bay Bucs welcome a fiery and still reasonably young -at age 49- head coach into town to revive the franchise. Considering what he’s done at Rutgers as well as his reputation as a leader of men, I wouldn’t doubt Schiano in this -or any- situation!

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