The Cincinnati Bengals and Jacksonville Jaguars have been selected as the two coaching staffs for the 2009 Under Armour Senior Bowl, officials announced Monday. The Bengals will coach the North squad in Mobile, while the Jaguars will head up the South squad.
This is the second time the Bengals have been selected to coach the senior showcase event after serving as the North staff for the 2004 Senior Bowl. Jacksonville will be coaching the Senior Bowl for the first time.
"Coaching in the Senior Bowl was very valuable to us in 2004, and we are excited to once again have this opportunity," Cincinnati head coach Marvin Lewis said. "The top talent is always going to be at this game, and there's nothing like the evaluation you can get from actually coaching these players in practice and game situations."
The Bengals selected three Senior Bowlers in the 2004 draft, including Keiwan Ratliff, Madieu Williams and Greg Brooks. Lewis also coached in the 1998 Senior Bowl, as defensive coordinator on the Baltimore Ravens staff that directed a 31-8 victory for the South. "The hands-on work you do gives you a great insight into how guys learn and understand," Lewis said.
The trip to Mobile will be a reunion of sorts for Jacksonville head coach Jack Del Rio. Not only did Del Rio and Lewis serve on the same staff during Baltimore's Super Bowl winning season in 2000, but coaching the South squad will also give him an opportunity to coach the three USC linebackers (Brian Cushing, Rey Maualuga and Clay Matthews) currently scheduled to participate in the Under Armour Senior Bowl. Del Rio was an All-American linebacker at USC in 1984.
"My coaching staff and I are looking forward to working with the players in Mobile and coaching the Senior Bowl," Del Rio said. "This is a good opportunity for our staff to become very familiar with each player and see how they work throughout the week. I'm also looking forward to seeing Marvin Lewis and coaching against the Bengals staff. We expect it to be a busy and productive week."
Former University of Alabama head coach Mike Shula, who now coaches quarterbacks for the Jaguars, will also experience a reunion while in Mobile later this month. Shula's return to the state of Alabama for the 60th game means he will have the opportunity to once again coach Alabama quarterback John Parker Wilson who was named to the South squad in December.
The 2009 Under Armour Senior Bowl is scheduled for January 24th at 6 pm (CT) in Mobile's Ladd-Peebles Stadium. The game will be televised by the NFL Network.
Tickets for the 2009 Under Armour Senior Bowl are currently available for purchase at the Senior Bowl ticket office (151 Dauphin Street), select Regions Bank locations, online at www.seniorbowl.com or by calling (251) 432-4109.