Illinois head coach Ron Zook looks on during the second quarter against Minnesota in an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011, in Minneapolis. Minnesota won 27-7. (AP Photo/Tom Olmscheid)
Updated: February 24, 2014 10:11PM
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy made a series of moves Friday to fill out his coaching staff, among them hiring former Illinois coach Ron Zook to help with special teams.
Zook worked with McCarthy when both of them were in New Orleans, before Zook returned to the college ranks and eventually became the head coach at Florida. Zook will replace Chad Morton, whom the Packers said had been relieved of his duties.
The Packers also hired Sam Gash to coach running backs, a job that became vacant when Alex Van Pelt was moved to quarterbacks coach. He replaced Ben McAdoo, who left Green Bay to become the offensive coordinator of the New York Giants.
Winston Moss will oversee all linebackers after working with the inside linebackers; Scott McCurley will be an assistant linebackers coach; Jason Simmons will be a defensive and special teams assistant; John Rushing will be a defensive quality control coach; Luke Getsy will be an offensive quality control coach; and Chris Gizzi will be a strength and conditioning assistant.
“The offseason is progressing with the finalization of adjustments and additions to our coaching staff,” McCarthy said in a statement Friday.
“Every day and every decision has the focus on bringing the Lombardi Trophy back to Green Bay. The evaluation process will continue with a vision to change, adjust or emphasize any aspect of our program to help us reach the attainable goal of another Super Bowl championship.”
Zook isn’t the only newcomer with connections to the Packers coaching staff.
Gash played for McCarthy in New Orleans in 2004, the year before McCarthy became the offensive coordinator in San Francisco. He also played for Van Pelt in Buffalo in the 1990s.
Moss has been with the Packers for the past nine seasons, serving as assistant head coach and inside linebackers coach the past five. He’ll be assisted by McCurley, who has been the Packers’ quality control coach for the past five seasons.
Gash spent the past six seasons as the running backs coach in Detroit, while Simmons has been the Packers’ coaching administrator the past three years.
Rushing has been an offensive assistant in Green Bay the past two seasons, Getsy joins the staff after working with wide receivers at Western Michigan, and Gizzi spent last season with the North Carolina football program.