"That meant a lot to me. It was like he was my father, talking to me". It was gratifying, I was so proud of him.
But he returned just in time to become bowl eligible. I know I let them down. Taggart, however, is just the third Florida State head coach since 1976, which was the first season for former Seminoles coaching legend Bobby Bowden.
One of the most important people in Willie Taggart's life said she is thrilled to have her son back in their home state.
"Things were going really well there in every aspect", Taggart told reporters. Just think about it: Being able to meet Phil Knight, he's an icon.
Here's defensive back Brady Breeze, "we kind of had to come together as a team and say hey, we need to focus on this bowl game and not let the coach situation take us down". I told him I'm sorry. "The timing is probably not right, but it's never right when it's time to leave". "But no matter where I went, the Seminoles were always a part of me". But to be closer to your family (in Florida) and still have an opportunity to coach in the power five, and still have an opportunity to win a national championship, which is my personal goal, it was tough to overcome.
His mother, Gloria, sat in the front row during the news conference with several other family members, making the four-hour drive with her granddaughter.
"I'm excited to be the man, and I want to continue the winning tradition", Taggart said.
He said Wednesday that when he got the call about Florida State's interest, it was a "dream come true" for him. But until we heard him speak on Wednesday, we didn't know how genuine his feelings for FSU were.
His journey to FSU began long before the whirlwind of landing three head coaching jobs in 365 days.
Florida State also agreed to pay the remaining $1.37 million left on his buyout to USF, and the $3 million buyout owed to Oregon.
Now, Taggart will be tasked with replacing former coach Jimbo Fisher and helping Florida State return to prominence in the ACC and as a contender for the College Football Playoff semifinals.
"The energy, the passion and his philosophy were exactly what we were looking for", Wilcox said. "But this job was a dream for me".
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