However, when it became apparent that Morris did not want to return to San Francisco, the 49ers reluctantly gave permission and Mariucci quickly got the deal done. Morris will replace the dismissed Carl Mauck.
"He's a heck of a football coach," said Lions Head Coach Steve Mariucci. "We've known each other for a long time professionally and we've known each other as friends for a long time too. It's a perfect fit – he'll be a nice addition to this staff."
Morris formerly was the offensive line coach for Michigan State under George Perles before joining the 49ers in his first pro assignment in 1997.
The Lions now will turn their attention to former Chicago Bears head coach Dick Jauron who they would love to hire as their next defensive coordinator. Lions coach Steve Mariucci brought back Kurt Schottenheimer last season after looking around a bit last season, but after Detroit dismal finish defensively, ranking near the bottom of the NFC, Mariucci is again looking for improvement.
Jauron is in the running for the vacant Buffalo Bills job and is said to be the front runner, although LSU head coach Nick Saban is also on their wish list, but thought to have too steep a price tag for the Bills.