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Marc Trestman named coach and GM of XFL’s Tampa Bay franchise

Marc Trestman coached the Bears from 2013-14. | Jessica Koscielniak/Sun-Times

Marc Trestman will be the head coach and general manager of the Tampa Bay franchise in the upcoming, new edition of the XFL, the league announced Tuesday. Trestman is the fourth head coach to be named for the eight-team league after Bob Stoops (Dallas), Jim Zorn (Seattle) and Pep Hamilton (Washington).

The move to the XFL continues a journeyman-like career for Trestman, who will be making his 17th coaching stop since he became a volunteer coach at Miami in 1981.

Bears fans know Trestman well from his two-year stint as head coach of the franchise in 2013-14. An acclaimed offensive guru who was supposed to unlock Jay Cutler’s potential as a passer, Trestman arrived after an impressive five-year run with the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes that included two Grey Cup titles. Instead, he led a pair of mediocre Bears teams that were among the NFL’s worst defensively.

After being fired by the Bears in 2014, Trestman moved on to become offensive coordinator of the Ravens for a brief stint before returning to the CFL with the Toronto Argonauts. He proved that he can still thrive in Canada by leading the Argonauts to the championship in 2017, but they regressed to a brutal 4-14 record in 2018 before Trestman was fired.

The XFL, which is owned by Vince McMahon’s Alpha Entertainment LLC, plans to start its inaugural season in 2020 with teams in Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay and Washington. It shares the name and trademark with the failed league that McMahon started with NBC two decades ago, but McMahon says the new XFL will focus more on football and less on wrestling-style entertainment.