The Buccaneers have hired Southern Mississippi head coach Todd Monken as their new offensive coordinator, the club announced today. The position was vacated, obviously, when Tampa Bay promoted Dirk Koetter to head coach. Per the team, Monken will also serve as receivers coach.
“I am very excited to add a coach with the type of experience and tenacity that Todd brings,” said Koetter 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 his players. During his more than 25-year coaching career, he has made a name for himself as a very successful offensive coordinator and head coach on the collegiate level.”
Monken is certainly an outside-the-box hire, as there had been no reports linking him to Tampa Bay or any other NFL vacancies. But the move isn’t completely out of left field, as Monken has a history with Koetter —the pair worked together on the Jaguars’ staff from 2007-10 (Koetter as OC, Monken as WRs coach). For what it’s worth, that time in Jacksonville represents Monken’s only NFL experience.
In his first head coaching job, the 49-year-old Monken has certainly turned around the Southern Miss program, improving from a 1-11 record during his first season in 2013 to a 9-5 mark during last year’s campaign. He’ll step into an enviable position in Tampa, as the Buccaneers are equipped with a potential franchise quarterback in Jameis Winston, an elite receiver in Mike Evans, and a solid — but free agent — running back in Doug Martin.
Koetter has already announced that he will call the offensive plays for the Buccaneers, so Monken will presumably act in more of a game-planning and administrative role.