Willie Taggart introduced as FSU's new football coach


University of OR students said they're disappointed by his decision to leave the Ducks, saying they wish he would have finished one season.

Willie Taggart has maintained that he was open, honest, and transparent with everyone at OR as he contemplated and eventually took the job at Florida State.

The 41-year old succeeds Jimbo Fisher, who left for Texas A&M Monday after 11 seasons with FSU, including eight as head coach.

Now some of Taggart's former players feel like they were hustled at the expense of his dream chasing. So I know there's a lot of 'Noles out there that want to be here. It was like me talking to him.

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"I'm very, very excited to be your football coach", Taggart told the crowd.

However, it's not just OR players that have been chiming in on Taggart's seeming change of heart. He grew up idolizing former FSU players "Prime Time" Deion Sanders, Charlie Ward, Derrick Brooks, Warrick Dunn, Peter Warrick, Anquan Bolden, Danny Kanell and Chris Weinke.

Although the pull of going back home to the state of Florida coaching the Seminoles was too strong, some of the OR players took to Twitter to voice their displeasure with the way Taggart handled himself in the time leading up to his departure from Oregon.

Taggart said after hearing legendary coach Bobby Bowden speak about "faith, family and football", he implemented those principles in his coaching philosophy. "I feel bad about that", Taggart said. He said he always wanted to find his way here, so when he walked onto the 50-yard line at Doak Campbell Stadium for the first time, he raised his arms and shouted, "I made it". "So I expect to go out and win a lot of ball games like they did".

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Recruiting goals for Taggart?

Taggart agreed to a six-year deal that will pay him $5 million annually. All of the assistants will coach through the bowl game. And Florida State will pay his $3 million buyout to OR, along with more than $1.3 million still owed to USF for his departure to OR a year ago.

"Things were going really well there in every aspect", Taggart told reporters. Taggart said his father passed away last summer, so the FSU job means relocating closer to his mother, who still lives in Manatee County.

Taggart also hopes to return Florida State's defense to the tenacious group he was enamored with as a youngster. I wanted to come up and play here, but I wasn't good enough.

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Willie Taggart started his Florida State career with the Tomahawk Chop as he arrived to cheerleaders and the Seminoles marching band. We were a bunch of war daddies. "And then, you see your picture up on the big Jumbotron and my name was spelled right. Don't make me start dancing, I feel great!'"