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February 10, 2012 @ 10:11 pm
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BREAKING NEWS: Bucs Make It Official; Hire Giants Mike Sullivan As Offensive Coordinator

Written by Mark
Cook
Mark Cook

Mark
Cook

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First reported earlier today as a possibility, the Bucs made it official tonight hiring Giants QBs coach Mike Sullivan as their new offensive coordinator. Sullivan is the first official hire for Greg Schiano.
The first of Tampa Bay's coordinators have been officially hired as tonight the Buccaneers announced the they have reached a contract agreement with Giants quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan as their new offensive coordinator.

"We are very fortunate to add someone like Mike Sullivan to lead our offensive coaching staff," said Head Coach Greg Schiano in an official press release by the Buccaneers this evening. "He is a man of character and a complete football coach, who fits with the kind of football team we are building here. His work with the Giants over the past eight seasons speaks for itself. Mike was an integral part of that team winning two Super Bowls in the last five years and we look forward to him bringing that experience and expertise to our club."

Sullivan joins the Buccaneers after working the past eight seasons for the New York Giants under Tom Coughlin, in which time he has earned two Super Bowl Championships, the most recent a 21-17 victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLVI.

For the past two seasons, Sullivan has coached the Giants quarterbacks, including Eli Manning. Under his tutelage, Manning has achieved two of the best seasons in the NFL, culminating in a Super Bowl MVP performance on February 5. This past season, Manning set a single-season franchise record in completions (359) and passing yards (4,933), which also ranked as the sixth-highest mark in NFL history. In fact, in two seasons with Sullivan as his position coach, Manning compiled the top two single-season completion totals and two of the top-five passing yards and touchdown passes marks in Giants history.

Before working with the quarterbacks, Sullivan spent six years teaching the Giants' wide receivers. In 2009, his group of wideouts caught 236 passes, of which WR Steve Smith had 107, breaking the franchise record for receptions and becoming the first Giants wide receiver to play in the Pro Bowl in 41 years.

In four seasons under Sullivan's direction, WR Plaxico Burress had 344 catches, placing him 12th on the franchise's career list, while also adding 3,681 receiving yards and 33 touchdown receptions. Burress recorded 10 of those touchdowns in 2006 and 12 the following year to become the first Giant since Del Shofner in 1961-62 to post back-to-back seasons with 10 or more touchdown catches.

Sullivan has a range of coaching ability, having also coached the defensive side of the ball with the Jacksonville Jaguars as their defensive quality control coach in 2002 before becoming the Jaguars' offensive assistant in 2003.

Sullivan joined the Jaguars after nine years coaching at the collegiate level. He began his coaching career at Humboldt State in 1993 and later went on to Army (1995-96 and 1999-00), Youngstown State (1997-98) and Ohio University (2001).

In 1997, while at Youngstown State, Sullivan coached under Jim Tressel as the Penguins won the Division 1-AA National Championship. At Ohio University, he coached the defensive backs and tutored the kick blocking units on special teams.

Sullivan was a defensive back at Army, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1989. He also has a master's degree from Humboldt State. Sullivan is a graduate of the U.S. Army Airborne, Ranger and Air Assault schools.

He and his wife, Julie, have two daughters.

The Buccaneers are reportedly close to hiring Butch Davis as a senior advisor, but nothing official has been released. There may be some problems relating to his contract buyout with the University of North Carolina according to some published reports today, but the situation is expected to be resolved allowing Davis to join the Buccaneers in some capacity.

A team spokesman would not comment on the Davis situation but did say Sullivan may be available to the media early next week.

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COMMENTS

  • avatar


    This is Georgehicks the no#1 Buc Fan in Eaast Tx-who grew up in Tampa-Last year ampa was Terrible-Nothing fancy they were going through the motion I think Hiring tese coached espically this Offensive Coordinator. I really appreciate the New York Giants Not Block the chance to get this individual on board. To run the offensive side of the board. Maybe Freeman will be Better than ELI I hope so. I see all the Pre Mock projection. Most of the time the CB from LSU was the hands down selection, The Trent Richardson is Next then the Best WR may fall at #5. I SAY IF HE IS AVAILABLE DRAFT THE BEST WR IN THE DRAFT. Then if the CB is still AVAILABLE FROM NEB AT PICK #4 IN rOUND 2 i SAY GO FOR IT.THEN IN ROUND THREE GO AFTER ARB, OL OR LB ao trade down to get more picks in round 3, like another pick in Rd-4. I think thaT SOME OF THESE COLLEGE PROSPECTS WOULD LOVE TO COME TO tAMPA TO BE TAUGHT BY THIS TEAM OF COACHES THAT ARE BEING ASSEMBLE. I SAY GREAT HIRED-GO BUCS
  • avatar


    I love this hire! He's a winner that knows how to coach QBs and WRs; and he comes from a team lead by a coach that values discipline. Great job on this one. Go Bucs!!
  • avatar


    Well fans thisn is what the DR. Order. Iam very disappointed in some of these so cll Nfl clubs who are not letting their coaches to get a promotionI think its a clear slam dunk and a great hired go bucs
  • avatar


    bucsmaniac, I agree. One hire and the wishy Bucs fans have become washy again in terms of their view of the team. There is talk of fans coming back to support the team again. At any rate, I agree with everyone else that this is a fantastic hire. Maybe I'm not as hard on the Glazers because I share their view of spending wisely (most see it as being cheap but everyone is free to their own opinion). I also share the Glazers and Dominik's view of operating on a need to know basis. You would be amazed by how much more you can get done that way.
  • avatar


    pinkstob, I couldn't agree more.
  • avatar

    I absolutely agree. I agree in not wasting and just grabbing "names" for the sake of it. I agree with operating in secrecy (the names that have comeout over the last month are by design), and I also think that they are hiring the correct way: interviewing ALOT of people and leaving all doors open to college, pros, and every style. Although it has become clear that discipline was a priority. - - - - - - - - - The only thing that seems to have hurt them is that by taking their time, many assistants are getting blocked because teams don't want to disrupt staff heading to the combine. I though there was a rule about letting coaches go for promotions? Either way I like the way it is shaping up.
  • avatar

    Great hire! I agree with Bucfan 82....I hope he tries to bring Mario Manningham with him.
  • avatar

    hope you guys are right... the last QB Coach turned OC didn't work out to well... does he have any play calling experience in the NFL?
  • avatar

    Didn't see this coming.
  • avatar


    Lotta "Cloak and Dagger" going on. So many Rutgers names and Sr Assistance candiates blowin in the wind. Yet Coach Schiano has officially hired an OC in Sullivan who by all indications should be a Plus to Freeman and a handfull of underachieving WR's. Can he run an offense? I hope so. That being said, I hope we Draft a Playmaker like Blackmon who can start off untarnished by the previous regime. By the way we gave away our 4th Pick in the Draft (Luke Stocker?) At the rate teams are rejecting our interview request we should have a DC by the time the Combine starts. I keep looking for all these Rutgers assistance to start raining down on us any day. Now that I have voiced a littly negativism our entire new Coaching Staff will be in place by Wednsday including Butch. I hope so....(Thats 3 "Hopes" in one post} Go Bucs........
  • avatar

    I like the hire and like the direction the team is going in general. A few more positions to fill then on to the draft.
  • avatar


    Brilliant hire!!!! Sullivan is a true innovator just what we needed to compete again. No more predictable offense, just watch. He's come up with some fantastic drills to get the most out of Eli, Freeman is going to be even better
  • avatar


    I like this hire.I never heard of him before today but after reading his resume i gotta say looks like a real good choice.LETS GO BUCS!!!
  • avatar

    I think this is a good hire it is clear that the new coach wants to emulate the Giants (good thing) , which is consistent with his opening press conference stating he wants to be a power running team that takes shots down the field and plays good defense , that is the Giants to a tee.Getting a long tenured assistant with the Giants is a smart hire. He was a QB coach and Freeman has the physical tools to be an elite QB so I think this is a good fit.
  • avatar


    See!! It worked out just fine. All good hires!
  • avatar


    Playas better watch out now. Pull up them pants and turn the hat to the front!
  • avatar


    One fantastic hire and everybody is in love again!!! lol damn those Glazers!! Go Buc's!
  • avatar


    1st for me is he is a hire FROM the NFL with NFL experience to go along with his earlier College coaching experience. 2nd. His coaching style and work ethics seem to be a match for Schiano's.. 3rd. Having this caliber of coach with NFL recognition should help us attract free agents. Don't think for a second it wouldn't have worked the other way if a prospect had to choose between us and another club with nothing but unproven college coaches. All I was hoping to see is candidates with NFL ties and experience. We the fans AND especially the current players sure as hell didn't need the COACHES to have more of a learning curve than necessary. In my opinion our core is good, real good in fact. It was mainly injuries that hurt besides the apathy of a few that made the rest look bad. Like some here I don't see the Davis hire as a positive due to the WAY it's going down. If the Bucs are SO concerned about the core values and beliefs. Why play this shady a$$ game. Do it right and have Davis drop the pay out and become the Bucs DC PERIOD..I'm assuming he'd get paid enough to get by..CHUCKLE GO BUCS !
  • avatar


    Great resume, may be great hire, time will tell. I like the hire and if we get a similar experienced DC and a respectable QB coach, we're pretty much on the way to turning this thing around! Go Bucs!
  • avatar


    Horse: This has to be your favorite hire with his Army background. Can you set Buc4life79 straight on the correct name of a soldier who jumps out of airplanes? Isn't it "paratrooper"? I don't know much more about this hire than former variety show host Ed Sullivan (remember him?), but I am pleased that our new OC has extensive NFL experience that will aid in his getting the players attention. Isn't this the first "official" hire?
  • avatar


    scubog, this is what we need right now and yes it makes me happy that the proper coaching staff is being gathered. First you get leadership and discipline from the coaches and present a clear picture to the players about the "The Buccaneer Way"; then you review what you have in good players and determine who is savable that's on the bubble; then you get two good free agents to fill a couple key needs; then you draft players to "the Buccaneer Way"; then we start becoming a competitive team. This is getting exciting!
  • avatar


    Yes ! really good hiring to coach our offense. But I have a lot of problem concerning the defensive coordinator. Pat Yasinskas from the NFC south blog (ESPN) explains it very well : "The other thing that’s a little strange about all this is that Davis, who already has received some of his severance, can still collect up to $1.7 million through 2015. Why not just come to the Bucs as a coordinator? He could make that kind of money in a single season, and more than that in the long run, because $1.7 million is well within the ballpark of what good coordinators make." I would prefer to have Butch Davis as a defensive coordinator rather than some obscur "Senior defensive adviser" position. Anyway, the coaching staff is almost all set, and it seems to be a good blend of NFL experience and College. I'm OK with it !!! GO BUCS, Prove the NFL and Analysts WRONG !!!!!!
  • avatar


    Good Hire. Better than I expected. Now the Bucs need to pick up a quality corner or two via Free Agency and then draft Claiborne, (or Kali or Reiff at OffensiVe Tackle or Kuechlyl or Upshaw at LB) if Claiborne is gone at number 5 in Round one. I think it is too high to select Richardson at number 5. Drafting Lamichaekl James or Isaiah Pead at RB makes better sense in Round 3. There are also several good WR available in Free Agency and then draft Sanu who played for Schiano at Rutgers in Round Two. He is one of those good hands receivers who has size and speed to stretch the field. He might possibly go in Round 1. Then concentrate on the LB's because to me that was one of the weakest areas on the team. There still should be a good LB available in Round 3 or 4. I am sure that Dominik will do some wheeling and dealing this year. I only hope that the Glazers are good to their word about spending in Free Agency. Also trading down at 5 would not be such a terrible idea either but a cover corner like Claiborne does not come along very often. He also returns kicks as well. It would really be hard to pass him up at 5 if he is available. I do not think he will make it to 5. Then you have to go to plan B. I have a really good feeling about this draft. I thin k this is where Dominik comes of age. Hopefully it will not be the same old status quo. I did not mean to rant but the Draft always makes me rant. Just some food for thought. The Bucs and myself always seem to have a difference of opinion in regard to draft picks.
  • avatar


    At least the FO taking this long paid off in the form of Quality coaches. Maybe there is a method to their madness??? Good hire!!! If the Buth Davis thing irons out we may have one of the better coaching staffs on paper. I am really getting excited now to see what this team turns into. I even have gotten my dad to agree to go to a game or two this season. We have season tix together but he hasn't been to a game since they fired Gruden, which I don't blame him, and he is even excited to see the new look BUCS.
  • avatar

    Steal either Rodgers-Cromatie or Asante Samuel through trade from eagles. Sign free agent Routt, that band aides the corners this year. Draft Trent Richardson, and any linebackers available after in the draft. With a 2 headed Nightmare for defenses in our back field, that will lower the pressure on the still developing receiving core. If we control the ground game and have the constant air attack on our defense cease, we get back to buc ball.
  • avatar


    I like this hire a lot and once Butch Davis contract becomes official, I believe we have started back on the right foot. Go Bucs! It's the Buccaneer Way now!
  • avatar


    Buc4life79!!!! CRACK THE MAN WHIP!!!! LOL
  • avatar


    I like this hire a lot. It seems like the Glazers finally understand what the rest of us have known for years about coaching in this league. Hopefully they figure out the free agent part of it as well.
  • avatar

    Yes, yes, yes. Now maybe the talking heads on Tampa sports radio will shut up or at least say something positive about the Bucs.
  • avatar


    Great hire, now Sullivan and Freeman need to get to work ASAP to improve his (Freeman) game.
  • avatar


    It really gets you wondering... Mike Sullivan - NYG Mario Manningham, man who arguably won the Giants their superbowl, a free-agent this year. Perhaps our new OC can bring him along to T-Bay! I'm sure Scott or Mark will have some commentary on that.
  • avatar

    I am ok with this hire! I agree with bucfan82..I hope he brings Mario Manningham with him!
  • avatar

    I LUV this hire. If anyone can make men out some of the boys on our offense it's this guy...Former Army Ranger Parachutter!!!!??? WOW, look out slackers, u will not be in Tampa anymore after Sully and Schiano start a crackin that MAN whip!!!! Again, absolutely love the hire...GO BUCS!!!!!
  • avatar


    Great article!
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