Willie Taggart To Coach Florida State, Leaves Oregon After One Season

Willie Taggart has left the University of OR to become the head football coach at Florida State.

The Seminoles have entered new territory following Fisher's departure.

Taggart is following in Todd Graham territory as the two not hold the only distinction to be the head coach of an FBS program in three straight years. But that belies the success he has had leading rebuilds at Western Kentucky, where he played quarterback from 1994-98, and South Florida.

His football career started at Bradenton Manatee High School, where he threw for over 3,000 yards in his two seasons as starter. Former offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher was a head-coach-in-waiting and no search was required when he took over the program. After three seasons with the Cardinal, he returned to WKU as the Hilltoppers' head coach in 2010. Graham was at Tulsa, Pitt and then Arizona State, while Taggart will have traveled from South Florida to OR to now Florida State. In both instances, the young coach turned things around quickly.

Sumlin spent six years at Texas A&M before being let go following the 2017 regular season.

A news conference to introduce Taggart is scheduled for 11 a.m. Wednesday in Tallahassee. The extension was worth a reported $20 million for five years.

Taggart is expected to bring some of his current staff with him to Tallahassee. Co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Mario Cristobal will be the interim head coach when OR faces Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl on December 16.

Mullens said OR has launched a nationwide search for a new coach.

The two sides hope to come to an agreement Monday night and a formal announcement of Taggart's hire could come as early as Tuesday.

Vanessa Coleman

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