The Buccaneers are widely believed to be leaning toward promoting their own offensive coordinator, Dirk Koetter, to head coach. But they have to conduct at least one other interview first.
According to Josina Anderson of ESPN, the Bucs will interview Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin for their head-coaching vacancy.
By interviewing Goodwin, the Buccaneers will have complied with the Rooney Rule, which requires each team with a head-coaching vacancy to interview a minority before hiring a new coach. But if the Bucs interview Goodwin and then proceed to hire Koetter, questions will be raised about whether the Bucs truly considered all qualified applicants for the job, rather than just deciding on Koetter first and arranging a Rooney Rule interview later.
Goodwin, as the coordinator of one of the NFL’s best offenses, is certainly qualified for head-coaching consideration. And he may consider it a benefit to his own career to get a head-coaching interview, even if the Bucs are going to hire Koetter. But teams that schedule an interview with a minority candidate after they’ve already decided to hire a white coach are following the letter of the Rooney Rule while violating its spirit. The rule was designed not to increase the number of interviews given to minority coaches, but to increase the opportunities of minority coaches. A team that gives a coach an interview after deciding to hire someone else isn’t actually giving that coach an opportunity.
So Goodwin will get an interview. It remains to be seen whether he actually has an opportunity to become the Buccaneers’ next head coach.
Photo via Arizona Cardinals.