Tampa Bay general manager Mark Dominik met with the media at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama on Tuesday and announced that the team had let Barry out of his contract so that he could return to his alma mater as the linebackers coach and be reunited with defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin.
"The reason behind it was not only Monte Kiffin and all the years of service that he brought to the football team, but Joe Barry was a player at USC, a captain at USC, his wife is from there," Dominik said in the Tampa Tribune. "So in just talking through that with Joe and Coach (Raheem) Morris, we decided to let him have that opportunity, which was something that he wanted."
The 39-year-old assistant played linebacker for the Trojans and started his coaching career as defensive graduate assistant at USC during the 1994 and 1995 seasons.
"It's exciting, it really is,'' Barry said. "We have a saying at SC that says you go to college there for four years but you're a Trojan for life, and it's no lie. It really is that way.
"I mean, It's a sweet spot to be and it's a great opportunity and the chance to work with Lane and the chance especially to work for Monte again only makes it that much sweeter for me.''
Barry's NFL coaching career included two stints as the Buccaneers' linebackers coach. He also served as the defensive coordinator of the Detroit Lions from 2007-2008.
"SC gave me an offer I couldn't refuse, they made it real nice for me, and with the NFL and where it's at right now, I just had to take them up on it if I could."
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