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Florida State Seminoles

Willie Taggart almost out of arguments to be kept

Matt Zemek



Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s start here: If Willie Taggart isn’t gone at Florida State now, he is likely coaching for his job at Boston College. Alabama State will be a victory, so if the Seminoles are going to get to six wins, they have to beat Boston College on the road. They aren’t likely to come particularly close to Florida in The Swamp.

Boston College is the game Taggart must win. Nearly everyone in the room would agree, depending on being able to afford a buyout and then, fire him, this is a must if Taggart is to stay on and get a shot at a 2020 season.

Having established that point, the fact that we are sitting here discussing must-win games against Boston College is enough of a commentary on the state of FSU football under Taggart.

No improvement. No transformation of the culture. No meaningful player development.

No motivational skills, something Taggart used to do well at South Florida and Western Kentucky.

No sense of the occasion, as manifested in a pancake-flat performance against an archrival at home on Saturday.

The Miami Hurricanes blew through the Seminoles 27-10 on Saturday. This was a simple butt-kicking. Miami’s pitiful offense moved the ball well against Florida State’s defense. When Miami’s 2019 offense looks competent and lucid against your defense, you have huge problems.

Miami was far more focused, far more physical, far more alert, far more invested in the outcome of this game. Losing to Miami in a consequential game – with possible bowl eligibility on the line – is bad enough.

Getting curb-stomped by a more motivated opponent? That is a total disaster, possibly one Taggart cannot recover from.

If you were to tell me he is already done, I would say you have a good argument and might easily be right.

And, I am not arguing against firing Willie Taggart right now; I am only offering some more words of caution about taking this particular step.

A program has to be a disaster for a coach to be fired after two seasons. If Taggart reaches a bowl game in 2019 after missing a bowl game in 2018, it would be harder to make that argument. Yet, one could still assemble a case that Florida State is nowhere near where it should be.

Miami has not been good the past two years. Willie Taggart is now, 0-2 against this low-rent version of the Hurricanes.

The non-Clemson portion of the ACC Atlantic has been very weak the past two seasons. Florida State has not come close to finishing second in the division behind Clemson.

The Seminoles finished fifth in the Atlantic last season, and must beat Boston College to avoid finishing fifth again, this season.

Fifth. In the division. Two years in a row.

Florida State.

Yes, Wake Forest will finish ahead of FSU this year, and Louisville is likely to do the same.

Again, the BEST-CASE scenario for Taggart is that he has to beat Boston College.

If he loses in Chestnut Hill, nothing can save him, whether FSU finds the money to do it soon or he’s done next year, at the latest.

Matt Zemek is the co-editor of Tennis With An Accent with Saqib Ali. Matt is the lead writer for the site and helps Saqib with the TWAA podcast, produced by Radio Influence at Matt has written professionally about men's and women's tennis since 2014 for multiple outlets: Comeback Media, FanRagSports, and independently at Patreon, where he maintains a tennis site. You can reach Matt by e-mail: You can find him on Twitter at @mzemek.

Florida State Seminoles

FSU and LSU announced two game neutral site series Tuesday

Florida Football Insiders



Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

In an effort to continue to beef up their out-of-conference schedules, FSU announced on Tuesday that they will play newly-crowned National Champion, LSU in two neutral site games coming soon in 2022 and 2023.

The Seminoles made the announcement through social media and their website that they will be playing the “Bayou Bengals” first in New Orleans and then, in Orlando:

Both teams will be given the benefit of essentially a “home-away-from-home neutral-site game” on Labor Day weekend. LSU considers New Orleans to be their second home and just won the College Football Playoff National Championship game over Clemson there on January 12.

The first game with the Noles will be on Saturday night September 4th, 2022.

FSU will, then play “hosts” in Orlando against the Tigers the following year on Saturday night September 3rd. The Noles recently played a season-opening game with Ole Miss, whom they defeated, at Camping World Stadium in 2016.

New Seminoles head coach Mike Norvell had this to say in the school statement about adding the games coming soon,

“I’m excited about this series,” head coach Mike Norvell said. “Florida State has a rich tradition in Louisiana, the home of many former Seminoles including Warrick Dunn and Travis Minor, and all three of our national championship teams had at least one player from Louisiana. It continues to be an important area for us now. We added two players from Louisiana in our first signing class, and it will be great for them and other future Noles to be able to play back in their home state.

This series matches two of the iconic brands in college football, and I know our fans will have a great time in New Orleans and Orlando. I want to thank our administration for all their hard work on this and for continuing to pursue first-class experiences for our student-athletes.”

These will be the 10th and 11th times that Florida State and LSU will meet. The Noles hold a 7 – 2 advantage, including winning four straight games in the series. It is the first time the two schools will have played since 1991.

Further, Florida State is 9 – 2 in their last 11 games opening a season on a neutral field. The Seminoles were to have played Boise State in Jacksonville last Labor Day weekend, but the threat of Hurricane Dorian moved the game to Tallahasse.

That’s where the Broncos upset the Seminoles and sent coach Willie Taggart into a second year spiral that resulted in his firing in November.

The Noles are also 8 – 2 all-time in games  at the Superdome with the most prominent one coming in the BCS Championship Game win over Virginia Tech in the 2000 Sugar Bowl.

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Florida State Seminoles

Deion tells Dan Patrick he’d consider coaching Hurricanes

Florida Football Insiders



Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Hall of Famer and former Seminoles All-American defensive back Deion Sanders is making the rounds for broadcast outlets at Super Bowl 54 in Miami,. And it’s not just his NFL Network duties that made some news on Tuesday. Rather, it’s an interview, where he expressed more desire for coaching college football and maybe, even in the city where he currently is working this week.

Sanders appeared on The Dan Patrick television – radio show Tuesday in advance of the 49ers and the Chiefs meeting for pro football’s title at Hard Rock stadium Sunday night.

And, while most of the interview centered around the NFL and the Super Bowl match-up, Patrick naturally turned to Deion’s desire to apparently be a head coach in college football and maybe, as soon as next year.

This subject came up after Sanders was apparently under consideration to possibly be the new head coach at FSU, when they fired Willie Taggart in early November. The school and AD David Coburn did confirm that they had a serious formal discussion with “Prime Time” about building a staff, etc.

That’s when Patrick turn the questioning to Sanders’ son and what might test his loyalty to FSU and possibly, coaching at a hated-rival like the University of Miami.

“What if ‘The U’ called?” Patrick asked.

“You know what is so funny, cuz I saw that when I was watching you on television (earlier in the day when Patrick said he would ask Sanders about Miami). My son is a phenomenal quarterback. My youngest son. He has a plethora of offers. We’re going to visit ‘The U’ on Saturday,” Sanders said.

“But would you coach the U?,” Patrick quickly asked again.

“You know what. You never know,” Sanders replied leaving the door open, like most do.

“Are you a ‘package deal’ with your son,” asked Patrick?

“I’ve never been a package deal with any-body,” Sanders shot back, which drew laughter from the studio audience at Patrick’s Super Bowl show site.

Now, the Hurricanes have obviously floundered for much of the 2010s, including 2019 with first-year coach Manny Diaz struggling mightily down the stretch of his first season. Miami lost it’s final two games to finish 6 – 6, and then, were shutout humiliatingly by Louisiana Tech 14 – 0 in the Independence Bowl.

Miami has swapped offensive coordinators after Diaz fired Dan Enos after just his first season. The Canes have hired former Auburn and SMU play-caller Rhett Lashlee to replace him. And, they secured Houston dual threat transfer QB D’Eriq King for this season.

Sanders was a two-time All-American at Florida State (1987, ’88), and won the Jim Thorpe Award during his final season playing for the Seminoles in 1988. He was selected in the first round of the 1989 draft by the Atlanta Falcons and played in the NFL through the 2005 season.

His elite level of play earned him inductions into both the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Sanders has been analyst for the NFL Network for the past 10 years and clearly has the desire to try something else.

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