Saying he cannot make the commitment for a return to coaching, Bill Parcells turned down the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' head coaching job Friday. It was yet another stunning reversal for the mercurial Parcells, who said he is finished coaching for good and that he means it this time.
"I'm retired for good," Parcells told Newsday Friday night from his home in Sea Girt, N.J. "You should believe it, because it's over for sure. I can't make the commitment to it. I know what it takes and I know how I'm going to do it, if I do go do it. But I can't do it anymore. It's too much. What I said a couple of years ago -- I coached my last game -- that turns out to be a true statement. This ought to put an end to it. It will be three years."
For once, the next step for Parcells will not be another job, but a Hall of Fame induction. He is on the list of finalists for induction for the second straight year.
The first indication that Parcells was wavering came Thursday, when he announced on his weekly radio show that he was having doubts about his desire to return to coaching. The next signal came Friday at 5 p.m., when assistant general manager Mike Tannenbaum informed the Jets that he was not leaving the club to become general manager of the Bucs.
Tannenbaum, who toured the Bucs' facilities Tuesday and Wednesday, would have served as Parcells' right-hand man in a restructured Tampa Bay front office. But about two hours after Tannenbaum announced he was staying with the Jets, Parcells started calling his friends around the league and informing them that he was not taking the job. He already had called Joel Glazer, son of Bucs owner Malcolm Glazer, to inform them of his decision.
It was another suspense-filled charade revolving around Parcells, 60, who might have to retire for good with more jilted teams (Giants, Jets, Patriots, Bucs) than Super Bowl rings (two) on his resume.
Parcells left the Jets in January 2000, saying, "I coached my last game." But it became obvious in recent weeks that he was in line to succeed the fired Tony Dungy with the Bucs, whom Parcells also left at the altar in 1992.
Dungy in Charlotte
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Tony Dungy was in Charlotte on Friday to interview for the Carolina Panthers' vacant head coaching job.
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- San Diego Chargers general manager John Butler said his interview with Marty Schottenheimer went well, but offered little else as the coaching search extended to nearly three weeks.
"We had a chance to visit and converse and really that is all I can say," Butler said Friday after returning from Las Vegas, where he met with Schottenheimer on Thursday.
Butler wouldn't say if he made an offer.
"I'm not going to say anything other than we had a conversation," Butler said.
The GM plans to interview New York Jets defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell on Monday in Mobile, Ala., site of the Senior Bowl. By then, Cottrell will have interviewed with Indianapolis and Carolina.
A third candidate is Norv Turner, the Chargers offensive coordinator who was the only coach to keep his job after a 5-11 season. Head coach Mike Riley and the rest of the staff were fired Dec. 31 after the Chargers finished with nine straight losses.
Schottenheimer was fired by Washington on Sunday night, making way for the hiring of Steve Spurrier. Schottenheimer was 8-8 in his only season in Washington.
Schottenheimer was coach of the AFC West rival Kansas City Chiefs from 1989-1998, compiling a 104-65-1 record. From 1992-95, either the Chargers or the Chiefs won the division title.
Although the Chiefs reached the AFC championship game once in Schottenheimer's tenure, his teams were notorious for collapsing in the postseason. Schottenheimer also coached the Cleveland Browns from 1984-88. The Browns reached the AFC championship game twice, losing both times.
Turner was head coach of the Washington Redskins from 1994 until being fired with three games left in the 2000 season. Before that, he was offensive coordinator with Dallas, helping the Cowboys win consecutive Super Bowls.
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