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#pounditTuesday, August 11, 2020

Buccaneers hire two full-time female assistant coaches

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bruce Arians is bringing a progressive culture to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Bucs announced on Wednesday that they have hired two women for full-time coaching roles with the team. Maral Javadifar has been hired as an assistant strength and conditioning coach, and Lori Locust was added as an assistant defensive line coach. The hires make the Bucs the first NFL team with two full-time female coaches on staff.

Arians said in a statement that he wanted to help the women get their foot in the doors because he knows how difficult that is.

“I know how hard it can be to get that first opportunity to coach at the highest level of professional football,” Arians said in a statement shared by the Bucs. “Sometimes, all you need is the right organization to offer up the opportunity. The Glazer family and our general manager, Jason Licht, were extremely supportive of my decision, and I know Maral and Lori will be great additions to my coaching staff.

“I have known Lori going back to my days at Temple University and I’ve seen firsthand just how knowledgeable and passionate she is about this game. I was equally impressed with Maral’s background in performance training and physical therapy and I know she will be a valuable asset to our strength and conditioning program.”

Javadifar has a doctorate in physical therapy and has worked as a trainer and physical therapist. Locust served as the defensive line coach for the AAF’s Birmingham Iron and also served as a defensive coaching intern during training camp for the Baltimore Ravens last year.

Arians, who is entering his first season as Tampa Bay’s head coach, has a history of hiring women to roles within his team. In 2015, his Arizona Cardinals made Jen Welter the first female coach in the league.

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