Florida State head coach Willie Taggart, right, disagrees with the referee in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Miami in Tallahassee, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Mark Wallheiser)

FSU football fires coach Willie Taggart nine games into his second season

Florida State has fired coach Willie Taggart nine games into his second season leading the Seminoles. Athletic director David Coburn announced the termination in a press release, noting it is effective immediately and that Taggart will not continue leading FSU this season.

Florida State is off to a 4-5 (3-4 ACC) start this season after falling 27-10 to in-state rival Miami on Saturday. It finished 2018 with a 5-7 (3-5 SEC) record. In all, Taggart was 9-12 (6-9 ACC) at FSU, which is in danger of missing a bowl game for the second consecutive season.

“I spoke to Coach Taggart this afternoon to let him know of our decision,” said Coburn in a press release. “I met with the team and coaches immediately after that conversation to let them know of the change. It was very important to us that the student-athletes know right away.”

“I think very highly of Coach Taggart and wish him well, but in the interest of the university we had no choice but to make a change,” said FSU president John Thrasher.

Long-term Noles assistant Odell Haggins will step in as interim coach for the remainder of the season. Haggins, the defensive line coach, is in his 26th season on the coaching staff, a holdover from both Bobby Bowden and Jimbo Fisher. He was 2-0 as an interim coach for FSU back in 2017 with a win in the Independence Bowl.

Taggart left for Florida State after just one season at Oregon where he led the Ducks to a 7-5 (4-5 Pac-12) record. His hiring by the Ducks was considered a big win at the time after Taggart had turned around South Florida from 2-10 in his first season to 10-2 in 2016.

Author: TOM FORNELLI/ CBS Sports
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