Greg Schiano Not Guilty Of Cronyism

May 9th, 2012

Yesterday Joe touched upon what some Bucs fans perceive as a troubling pattern of new Bucs coach Greg Schiano signing a bunch of his ex-players from Rutgers.

Many fans brought up Steve Spurrier, who, in his only NFL coaching stint at Washington, decided to try to turn the Redskins into Gainesville north, only to see it blow up in his face.

The Spurrier analogy has also raised the antennae of Steve White. The former Bucs defensive end who appeared on the radio show of good guy Derek Fournier, “Old School” of fame, something called “Touch Yourself,” or some such thing heard Sunday mornings on WQYK-AM 1010.

Here, White admitted he’s trying to ignore all the Rutgers connections.

“I’m trying not to be concerned that we are targeting so many guys with personal ties to [Schiano]. That can be a good thing or a bad thing. Just because he played well for you at Rutgers doesn’t mean he will be a good NFL player. Maybe he will be, maybe [Schiano] can bring that out. But I remmber when Steve Spurrier had a former [Gators] quarterback and receivers and this guy and that guy and it didn’t work out. There is some precedence that shows that when an ex-college coach goes shopping for his ex-players in college” it doesn’t work.

Well, it’s not just his ex-players, but as White touched upon, it’s players who Schiano has personally known, whether it be players from West Virginia or Conneticut or even Leonard Johnson, who Schiano recruited out of high school. And he admits to having a strong bond with Johnson’s old high school coach at Largo, Rick Rodriguez.

It’s not just players either, but coaches. Joe’s lost count how many ex-Rutgers coaches are on the Bucs staff, not to mention Butch Davis who hired Schiano to be his defensive coordinator at Miami.

Again, Joe doesn’t believe Schiano is guilty of cronyism. What coach doesn’t surround himself with guys with whom he’s familiar or has a background with?

As for the Bucs turning into Rutgers south, well, there are 90 positions available. Most of these guys will be camp meat for this summer. If Schiano is able to push some of these guys’ buttons to be effective football players, it’s a win-win for the Bucs.

20 Responses to “Greg Schiano Not Guilty Of Cronyism”

  1. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    It seemed to work out well for Jimmy Johnson and the Dallass Cowgirls.

  2. Miguel Grande Says:

    We need to judge the Little General on what he does and not what is said. I hereby reserve judgement as a loyal TB fan.

    I was surprised when Spurrier failed so miserably in Washington DC.

  3. jvato24 Says:

    This is completely retarded. The Bucs sign Vincent Jackson and Carl Nicks but by signing camp fodder from Rutgers we are screwed?! Wow

  4. Jon Says:

    Girault. End of discussion.

  5. Scotty in Fat Antonio Says:

    UGHHHHHH! When do OTAs start this month?

  6. T in Orlando Says:

    I agree with jvato. Other than Zuttah (who was here and proved himself well before Schiano arrived), none of the Rutgers players are being brought in to be starters (unlike what Spurrier did), and odds only 2, maybe 3 (including Zuttah) will even make the final 53 man roster.

    These are guys that I’m sure Schiano knows will work their asses off while in practice, and even though they won’t be team leaders, their effort will likely make the other bubble players work harder, which will make the “entrenched” 2nd and 3rd stringers work harder, which will ultimately push the starters to work harder. And if a player feels they will be just given a starting job and not have to work for it, will likely be shown the door, as there will be 89 other players willing to put the work in.

  7. Garv Says:


  8. Macabee Says:

    If the coach signs a bad player that he doesn’t know, he just a player that didn’t work out. If he signs a player that he knows and it doesn’t work, same thing! If it works out either way, then of course, he’s a genius. It doesn’t matter if he signs everyone from Rutgers or for that matter, Slippery Rock – at the end of the day like every other NFL coach – he’s got to win!

    On a side note I was surprised he did not sign Joe Martinek, FB. Just goes to show, you can’t always predict an outcome. Sometimes you just have to wait and see!

  9. Miracle Says:

    This sounds like a Psychology move to me. Schiano is trying to create a certain culture and environment for the team. It is much more successful when you can bring in certain individuals who already fit the mold to help shape the other individuals. I could be wrong but I seriously doubt many of these players will be here when it comes to the opening kickoff.

    This is how I hear much of the sales pitch from Schiano to these training camp guys. “Hey, you know I really value what you did for me in college. I want you here to help me create a culture for the rest of the team. If you work hard enough, you have a good shot of making the team. If you don’t make it, at least you got to showcase your skills in the NFL and you never know. But I need you here.”

    But I’m not a Schiano mouthpiece, its just my thoughts

  10. The Dutcher Journal (Pete Dutcher) Says:

    These are regular signings…they are opportunities. I have no problem with Schiano giving players her knows opportunities to earn spots on the team.

    You can bet that locker room is full of guys from last year feeling as though their jobs are on the line…and I’m VERY good with that.

  11. BigMacAttack Says:

    Schiano probably has a very long leash this first season and rightfully so, but don’t forget who has the final word on personnel decisions. Mark Dominick makes those calls and it appears that the only player on the team who has embarrassing photos of him with farm animals is Quincy Black.

  12. Jim Says:

    Zuttah is the only given to be on the final roster. Anyone else from Rutgers will have to earn a roster spot.

  13. thegregwitul Says:

    I think to be fair, most coaches, especially new head coaches look to surround themselves with familiar faces, be it staff and some players. I’m not worried about this at all. It’s when you force those familiar faces into starting spots without really holding a competition that you have a problem, and we already went through this last season with Raheem and Co. (see the linebackers for an example).

    I have confidence that Schiano will give everyone a fair chance and we will see some surprises in terms of opening day starters, and for the right reasons. I don’t expect to see five ex-Rutger players starting for this team, if that happens for any reason other than injury, we have a problem.

  14. BucFan20 Says:

    @ Scotty.
    I think they start Tuesday.

  15. Bucfan66 Says:


    These guys are being brought in to make it easier for Schiano to instill his beliefs, work ethic on his new team. It will make it easier for everyone to buy in to what Schiano is selling.

    Smart move.

  16. Drew Says:

    This is about as interesting as hearing the Disney characters will be suiting up on opening day.

  17. Sgt Mike Says:

    What, six players? Wouldn’t actually call it a coup. Not to mention Zuttah has been here for a few years and earned a nice contract through his play. Was Gibson signed before or after Schiano came to town? So technically he took a shot on four guys who will still have to earn a roster spot after cutdowns start at training camp. Maybe if he had bring in 15-20 guys and cut some of the sure shot solid backups to do so. The numbers are negligible given the extra camp time and preliminary roster spots given for new coach rule. I’m not concerned whatsoever. Go Bucs!

  18. Lion Says:

    This is a non issue, period. Schiano is establishing a foundation, and having a few of his people here in camp will set an example of how his players should act. I think from what we all know so far from Schiano is that he is a hard nosed guy, who will have the best 53 men on this team in the end.

  19. Buckleberry Finn Says:

    In you show up to a cardio class and most of the class is lazy, you will give a lazy effort. If most of the class is going full bore, you will try to keep up and give a higher effort.

    Order of Schiano has established a serious business atmosphere, with players he knows will push the starters to either get better or push them out the door!!

  20. Dave Says:

    These players are here because they know the coach, know what is expected, & know the system. It is an example during the camps. If some make the team, so be it, of not, no big deal either. Heck, last I looked there were only 4 players total, Zuttah and a couple others were here prior.

    As for the coaches. Same thing, some brought in because they know what the system is and know what to expect. Personally, I love this coaching staff on paper. We’ll see how it pans out.