Raiders add three more to the staff

The Oakland Raiders have added three more members to Norv Turner's coaching staff.

Martin Bayless, who played 13 NFL seasons and coached for Carolina in the recent Super Bowl, will serve as special teams assistant. Steve Sarkisian, most recently quarterbacks coach at 2003 National Champion USC where he also tutored the 2002 Heisman Trophy winner and NFL No. 1 overall pick, will operate in the same capacity for the Raiders. Jeff Fish, with pro and college coaching experience, joins the Raiders as strength and conditioning coach.

Since Oakland named Turner as its head coach on January 26, he has also added highly respected assistants Jimmy Raye (assistant head coach/offensive coordinator), Joe Avezzano (special teams), Rob Ryan (defensive coordinator), Don Martindale (inside linebackers), Pat Jones (outside linebackers) and Sam Clancy (defensive line).

Bayless, 41, was defensive assistant for the Carolina Panthers last season. Last year, he also coached defensive backs in NFL Europe for the Amsterdam Admirals. He played in 193 NFL games from 1984-96 with 150 starts at defensive back for the St. Louis Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, San Diego Chargers, Kansas City Chiefs and Washington Redskins. Turner was the Redskins head coach when Bayless spent a year in Washington in 1994.

Bayless, who entered the NFL as a fourth round pick by the Cardinals, posted 12 career interceptions, 11.5 sacks and one touchdown. The former Bowling Green star, who led the nation in interceptions as a senior with 10, also has previous coaching experience at the University of North Carolina and at Castle Park High in the San Diego area.

Sarkisian, 29, handled quarterbacks at USC for the past two seasons. Last year, he tutored Matt Linehart, who was named Pac-10 Player of the Year—only the second sophomore to win the award, John Elway being the first in 1980— as USC went on to win the National Championship. The previous year, Sarkisian coached Carson Palmer, the NFL's top overall pick in 2002 who won the Heisman Trophy and the Unitas Award en route to setting Pac-10 career records for passing yards and total offense. He was offensive assistant at USC in 2001 and in 2000 was quarterbacks coach at El Camino Junior College in Torrance (Calif.) where his quarterback, Robert Hodge, earned All-American honors.

Sarkisian played professional football for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League for three seasons (1997-99) and threw 16 touchdowns in 1999. He had a record-setting two-year (1995-96) career at BYU; Sarkisian completed 549-of-824 passes (66.6 percent) for 7,755 yards and 55 TDs in his career. As a senior in 1996, he led the nation in passing efficiency (173.6, the seventh best mark ever) as the Western Athletic Conference champion Cougars went 14-1 and won the Cotton Bowl. He was the WAC Offensive Player of the Year in 1996 and a second-team All-American. As a junior, he was All-WAC and led BYU to the WAC title. Against Fresno State that season, he set an NCAA game completion percentage record when he hit 31-of-34 passes (91.2 percent). He came to BYU from El Camino J.C., where he starred for two seasons (1993-94).

Fish spent the previous three seasons as head strength and conditioning coach at the University of Missouri, where he oversaw a program that worked with more than 485 student-athletes from all 20 Missouri sports teams. Fish, 37, was assistant strength and conditioning coach for the Kansas City Chiefs from 1999-2000. Prior to joining the Chiefs, the Ithaca, New York native served as a strength and conditioning intern for Tampa Bay. The certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist was strength and conditioning coach at the University of Tulsa from 1995-97 after serving in the same capacity at Kent State from 1993-95. From 1991-93, he coached strength and conditioning at Clemson. Fish began his coaching career as a graduate assistant strength and conditioning coach at Western Michigan in 1989. He played football (wide receiver) and baseball (shortstop) at Western Carolina.

John Morton, who has been the Raiders' Sr. Offensive Assistant, will now coach tight ends for the Raiders. He replaces Jay Norvell, who joined former Raider head coach Bill Callahan's staff at the University of Nebraska.


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