Speaking at the Women’s Careers In Football Forum at the NFL Scouting Combine, Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians said he planned to hire a female coach this year, citing his appreciation for a staff with diverse points of view.
Arians actually hired two female head coaches – the first time that’s happened in NFL history – and broke the news in an interview on Kenny And Crash on Fox Sports 910 AM in Phoenix, but didn’t reveal their names.
“We hired TWO female coaches today. An assistant defensive line coach and an assistant strength & conditioning Coach”
PewterReport.com has learned that the Bucs have hired Lori Locust as a full-time assistant defensive line coach. Locust was recently working on the staff of the Birmingham Iron of the AAF, and has previous coaching experience with Baltimore’s defensive line in the summer of 2018 under the team’s coaching apprenticeship program.
Locust, who played defensive end for a women’s semi-pro league, has been coaching football for 14 years, including at the high school, semi-pro and arena levels. She was previously with the National Arena League’s Lehigh Valley Steelhawks, where she was a defensive assistant, defensive lineman/linebackers coach and co-special teams coordinator prior to interning with the Ravens.
Maral Javadifar was hired to be a full-time assistant strength and conditioning coach. Javadifar has recently worked as a physical therapist at Avant Physical Therapy in Seattle. She completed her sports physical therapy residency at Virginia Commonwealth last summer. Javadifar has also worked as a physical therapist and performance trainer in Virginia, while also serving as a guest lecturer at George Mason University.
A native of Queens, New York, Javadifar played basketball at Pace University in New York City. After receiving a bachelor of ccience degree in Molecular Biology from Pace, Javadifar then earned her doctor of physical therapy degree from New York Medical College.
“I know how hard it can be to get that first opportunity to coach at the highest level of professional football,” Arians said. “Sometimes, all you need is the right organization to offer up the opportunity. The Glazer family and our general manager, Jason Licht, were extremely supportive of my decision, and I know Maral and Lori will be great additions to my coaching staff.
“I have known Lori going back to my days at Temple University and I’ve seen firsthand just how knowledgeable and passionate she is about this game. I was equally impressed with Maral’s background in performance training and physical therapy and I know she will be a valuable asset to our strength and conditioning program.”
Arians helped blaze a trail for women in football in 2015 when he hired Dr. Jen Welter as a training camp assistant coach in Arizona. Welter was the first female assistant coach in NFL history.
Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org