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    • michael89156

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      Smith’s history of winning wins over Bucs, fanslovie_zps0fa33f35.pngLovie Smith has been on the job less than six months, but it hasn’t taken long for the Bucs’ coach to earn the trust of his players. JAY CONNER/STAFF By Martin Fennelly | Tribune Staff Published: June 14, 2014 at 10:01 PMTAMPA — They ran at the ice-cream truck like school kids who heard the jingle. Only it was the NFL and these were Buccaneers eating slushies and snow cones.“First time I ever had an ice cream truck drive up after practice,” Tampa Bay safety Major Wright said. “Not even in Little League.”Leave it to Lovie.The Bucs finished minicamp the other day. Now there’s nothing between them and training camp but some time off, which in the case of the head coach means unloading boxes at his new home, the one that doesn’t have a basement.If the Bucs turn it around this season, they’ll be putting Lovie Smith’s basement in Chicago behind a glass wall, like in a museum.So this is where 8-8 all began ...Lovie is thinking bigger than that, a lot bigger, like don’t you dare come to Raymond James Stadium looking past his ball team. He has built a staff, overhauled this team, convulsive changes. He hand-picked a starting quarterback. He hand-picked a lot. Throw in the draft. And the new logo and uniforms.“All these things were positive steps, they really were, and they’re going to pay off,” Smith said. “There’s parity in the league. Nothing stays the same. I like that saying, ‘Nothing stays the same.’ And for us, we don’t want it to stay the same, it can’t stay the same. It’s our time. We’ve given. It’s time for us to take.”Forget the ice cream.There’s trust.Trust in Lovie.His players trust the track record. They trust the man.“I think if you talk with most players, they’re going to tell you trust means everything,” Smith said. “As a coach, you’re not going to put anyone on the field you don’t trust or have anyone on your football team you don’t trust when they’re away from football. They just want you to give them the truth, and be real, always.”Even fans are giving Lovie the benefit of the doubt for now. They might remember last season’s 4-12, and wonder about this and that, from quarterback on down, but they come back for Lovie.There’s some trust. Two scoops, in fact.“Look at his history,” said Wright, who played for Smith in Chicago. “He has a history of winning, a history of treating men like men, telling it like it is.”“Trust is real big,” said Bucs cornerback D.J. Moore, who also played for Smith in Chicago. “When you don’t believe your coach, it spreads throughout a team. When Lovie tells you something, it’s the truth.”That doesn’t mean it will be all snow cones.Smith has an exacting eye. Details are everything.“I had a game against Dallas,” Moore said with a grin. “I had like 13 tackles, a pass deflected, an interception … I got a D-minus grade. It’s just everything. Lovie wants your technique and your feet just right. Every time.”Smith smiled at hearing that.“Even though he got those tackles, it’s just not that,” he said. “It’s everything we’re teaching. How many tackles? Thirteen? There were probably 50 plays. What about those other plays? If I see something, I’m going to point it out. We’re going to be consistent with everybody. Each week we get a grade. Each week, everybody is going to know what the standard is.”That’s Lovie, too. It’s time for a break.“I’m going on this vacation to a great place we heard about: Tampa, Florida,” Smith said with a smile. “People here have been unbelievable. They believe in our team, in our plan. I’m pumped up. You might say well, yeah, Lovie, there are a couple of positions I want to see. Yeah, I want to see them, too. But I think we’re going to like what we’re going to see. We know what it takes to get back to the top, and that’s what we’re going to do.”If it sounds like an ice cream truck jingle, so be it.“This isn’t a 4-12 football team,” Lovie Smith said. “You have to trust me on that.”There’s that word again.

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    • Anonymous

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      So now it’s Lovie not GMac that got the ice cream truck?He also had something to do with the logo/uniform changes even though he was at least a year away from being with the team when that process started?Don't get me wrong, he's a big step up from the past half decade but the praise/hype for the guy is a joke at this point.

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    • Anonymous

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      So now it's Lovie not GMac that got the ice cream truck?He also had something to do with the logo/uniform changes even though he was at least a year away from being with the team when that process started?Don't get me wrong, he's a big step up from the past half decade but the praise/hype for the guy is a joke at this point.

      McCoy had to get Lovie's OK to bring that truck in, and I'm sure no uniform changes were made without his approval. The attitude change of this franchise is no joke. The coaching staff the Bucs had last year was the joke. The man commands respect and provides leadership. He has a track record at this level, and he couldn't care less about your opinion. The turd-in-the-punchbowl types have never impressed me either.

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    • Anonymous

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      Smith DOES inspire trust, but he also is a big link back to the days when the team turned from losers to winners. Lovie Smith is remembered for pushing Nickerson and Brooks to be better players. When he left to become a DC for the Rams, fans went to the Ram forums and posted that they just hired one hell of a coach. We did the same when Lovie first went to Chicago. Like Sparky says, the difference between last years coaching staff and this years is night and day and as Lovie says 'This isn’t a 4-12 football team,' because it wasn't last years team should have been 8-8 or 9-7 and would have been with better coaching. If we had achieved that record, people would be talking about this team being 10-6 or 11-5 this year. I believe that. 

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    • Anonymous

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          And if you want to remain a Buc, you have to EARN Lovie’s trust. It’s all about personal accountability; Lovie’s earned the trust of his players; now it’s up to the players to earn his…

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    • Anonymous

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      Trust belief and accountability.

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    • Anonymous

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      Trust leads to belief and then to accountability.The problem was that Schiano's system didn't inspire trust to begin with. It did in the first year after the mess that Morris left, but when the players could see that the system wasn't putting them in the best position to succeed, the trust factor was broken. When player's have to go to the coach and tell them that the schemes are NOT working, then you have a big problem. The coaching staff needed to see that first and then either find different players or modify the scheme to be more successful. Schiano's fault was being too true to his methods and not willing to change. Lovie on the other hand has a reputation for adjusting his scheme's to best fit his players abilities AND he's got success behind him that allows the players to believe even when things aren't going well. If this team was willing to hold it together under a coach like Schiano, you have to wonder how hard they will play for a coach like Smith.JMO.

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    • Anonymous

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      Post count: 2775

      So now it's Lovie not GMac that got the ice cream truck?He also had something to do with the logo/uniform changes even though he was at least a year away from being with the team when that process started?Don't get me wrong, he's a big step up from the past half decade but the praise/hype for the guy is a joke at this point.

      He's a huge step up from anything from the past decade. 

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    • Anonymous

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      Trust leads to belief and then to accountability.The problem was that Schiano's system didn't inspire trust to begin with. It did in the first year after the mess that Morris left, but when the players could see that the system wasn't putting them in the best position to succeed, the trust factor was broken. When player's have to go to the coach and tell them that the schemes are NOT working, then you have a big problem. The coaching staff needed to see that first and then either find different players or modify the scheme to be more successful. Schiano's fault was being too true to his methods and not willing to change. Lovie on the other hand has a reputation for adjusting his scheme's to best fit his players abilities AND he's got success behind him that allows the players to believe even when things aren't going well. If this team was willing to hold it together under a coach like Schiano, you have to wonder how hard they will play for a coach like Smith.JMO.

        One point, Nitey. IMO what broke the players’ trust is more likely that Schiano didn’t demonstrate HIS trust in the players by making adequate changes schemewise when they did come to him with valid points. In short, he had an agenda beyond figuring out how to win football games. Even Vince Lombardi, in his first NFL HC gig in Green Bay, had scheme problems. Players came to him and he LISTENED, and he followed through with positive changes. Lombardi’s relationship with his QB Bart Starr was legendary; they talked as honesty, good or bad, as any coach/QB ever. EACH criticized the other, and the other responded positively.  In Schiano’s defense, he did not have the veteran QB or other players to lean on for advice that Lombardi did. 

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    • Anonymous

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      Trust belief and accountability.

      lmao

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    • Anonymous

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      I really can’t stand Fennelly’s writing. However, I do trust in Lovie. I think that though it’ll take some time and patience if he’s given a few years he’ll get us back to the SB. I believe this team has the talent (if we can hang onto key components) and I believe Smith is a good enough coach to get us another trophy. I’m tempering my expectations for this year but I expect to see marked improvement.

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