Ruston Webster has been a valuable contributor to the Buccaneers' player personnel efforts since 1988
Ruston Webster has worn many hats during his 18 years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Now the team has another one for him.
On Monday, Webster was promoted to director of player personnel, a position that had been vacant since the departure of Tim Ruskell in 2004. After spending four years as the Bucs' director of college scouting, Webster takes on a wider scope of responsibilities, as he will now oversee both the professional and college aspects of the team's scouting.
And the Buccaneers won't miss a beat in Webster's previous position, as college scout Dennis Hickey has been promoted to director of college scouting. Hickey, another highly-valued, long-term member of the team's player personnel department, first joined the team in 1996 and has been an area scout since 1998.
"Ruston has been a dedicated and talented employee for our organization for nearly two decades, and we are pleased to promote him to this new position," said General Manager Bruce Allen. "In his new role, his responsibilities will include overseeing the pro and college departments. We believe this new structure will enable us to fully maximize our front office talent."
Webster first joined the Buccaneers in 1988 as a college scout in the Northeast region. A year later, he moved into the role of director of pro personnel, a position he held for three seasons. In 1992, he returned to the field and spent nine more seasons as an area scout, first in the South (1992), then in the Midwest (1993-94) and the Southwest (1995-2000).
In 2001, the Buccaneers brought Webster back to Tampa and installed him as the director of college scouting. His efforts in that role have helped the Buccaneers target and acquire such players as Michael Clayton, Jermaine Phillips, Chris Simms and Carnell Williams. Webster's work in both the front office and out on the road helped the Buccaneers assemble the talent necessary to win Super Bowl XXXVII in January of 2003.
While much of the Buccaneers' staff has been overhauled in recent years, Webster is one of the longest-running employees the franchise has had. He has worked with five different head coaches and three different general managers, and he is clearly still highly valued by Allen and the team's leadership. Monday's promotion ensures that this valuable asset will remain in the Buccaneers' organization for years to come.
"I look forward to working with everyone in my new role," said Webster. "This position will allow me the opportunity to expand my responsibilities and work closely with our staff on both the college and pro levels."
As Webster did four years ago, Hickey is coming in off the road, and the Buccaneers' scouting operations in Tampa will be better for it.
"We are excited to give Dennis this opportunity," said Allen. "He has earned this promotion with his excellent work ethic over the last nine years.
In his new role, Hickey will coordinate Tampa Bay's system of area scouts and be responsible for the annual compilation of information on amateur players. He had spent the previous seven years working the midwestern region in the Bucs' college scouting system.
Hickey's new position will have him stationed in Tampa year-around, where he spent the 1996 and 1997 while serving as a pro scout. He and his family resided in Kansas City during the last seven years.