Bucs' Kiffin ponders, decides to stay

Published: Saturday, January 14, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 14, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
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Tampa Bay defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin has coached the Bucs to nine straight top 10 rankings in total defense. Friday, he passed on an opportunity to go after a head coaching position for the second time in four year.

PIERRE DuCHARME/The Lakeland Ledger
Relax, Bucs fans, Monte Kiffin is staying put.
An expected dismantling of the Bucs' defensive staff won't include its patriarch.
Kiffin, 65, withdrew his name from consideration for the St. Louis Rams head coaching job Friday.
"After further discussions today with (general manager) Bruce Allen and (coach) Jon Gruden, I have decided to stay with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers," Kiffin said in a statement released by the team. "As I stated on Thursday, there is no doubt that this is a great place to coach. I like the makeup of our team and I'm looking forward to working with the returning players on defense.
"I appreciate the interest the St. Louis Rams expressed in me and really think highly of their organization, starting with (president) John Shaw."
Kiffin spoke at length with Shaw this week after the Rams asked for and received permission to interview the Bucs defensive coordinator.
It's the second time in four years that Kiffin turned down an opportunity for a head coaching position. The 49ers offered him their head coaching job after the Bucs won the Super Bowl in January 2003.
Last summer, Kiffin signed an extension through the 2007 season at approximately $1.7-million per season.

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