NFL father and NCAA son reunite in Tampa as coaches

7:08 PM, Aug 20, 2013   |    comments
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  • Bill Sheridan, the defensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Bucs, comments on what it's like to have his son, Nick Sheridan, in Tampa too as a USF Bull's quarterback coach.
  • Nick Sheridan says he and his dad are fortunate to have the opportunity to coach separate teams in Tampa Bay at the same time.



Tampa, Florida-- Years ago, Monte Kiffin was in charge of the Bucs' defense. He and his son, Lane, may be the most famous father-son coaching combo with ties to the Bay Area, but they never coached here at the same time.

Bill Sheridan now sits in Kiffin's office. He joined the Bucs as defensive coordinator last season when Greg Schiano was hired as Tampa Bay's head coach. Bill, too, has a son who is a young, up-and-coming college coach.

Nick Sheridan coached quarterbacks at Western Kentucky last season. When WKU's head coach, Willie Taggart, took the head coaching opening at USF in Tampa, an opportunity came along that doesn't happen often in coaching circles.

If Taggart brought Nick with him to USF, father and son would be coaching in the same city at the same time.

Taggart hired Nick to coach QBs here in Tampa, and reunited a father and a son after years apart.

"When I finished coaching college football (in 2004) and went to the (New York) Giants, I left my family back in Michigan," said Bill. "My kids, Nick and his brothers, were high school age and I wanted to let them finish."

Nick played football at the University of Michigan and graduated in 2010. At just 25-years-old, he's already moving his way up the coaching ranks. He has the added benefit of having his dad nearby to help him grow in his role.

"With us both being coaches, that's something that we have in common that we enjoy talking about," said Nick. "But, we talk about anything. He's my dad.

"He's been around this profession for so long and has been successful and seen a lot of great coaches, so, a lot of the time we'll end up talking about different ways to do things or ways to teach."

Bill has been coaching on the sidelines for about 30 years. His career began in 1985 as a grad assistant in Michigan. He's made stops in seven different states since then, and has worked his way up to one of the top positions in the NFL.

Now, he can watch his son march down a path he was once on many years ago.

"Now that he has had some success, it's really helped his confidence and also his enthusiasm and passion for the profession," said Bill. "I actually see Nick being a very successful, long-term coach."

For now, his son is just glad to have his dad around again.

"I just think we both feel very fortunate. It's unique that we're in the same town, but aside from that, just to be able to work at the places we do- for my dad to be a coordinator in the NFL and for me to coach quarterbacks at the Division-I level at a place that has such great tradition and great expectations like South Florida has," said Nick. "I think we both just feel very fortunate and the fact that it's together makes it that much better."

Nick and USF opens the college season August 31 against McNeese State while Bill and Bucs begin the 2013 NFL season a week later at the New York Jets.

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