Willie Taggart's mom: "I'm glad he's back home"

Willie Taggart introduced as FSU's new football coach

Many students disappointed Willie Taggart is leaving the Ducks

Taggart talked at length about his childhood growing up in Palmetto, Florida, where his whole family rooted for the Seminoles.

The latest unwrapping of goodness came courtesy of Florida State president John Thrasher at the press conference announcing the hiring of Willie Taggart as its new head coach on Wednesday.

"He said, 'Dad, I know you're struggling with this decision and I know it's your dream job, '" recalled Taggart, a Bradenton native who coached four seasons at USF.

"If you were living in my house, you'd have thought everybody in that house graduated from FSU, and none of us did", Taggart said. So I know there's a lot of 'Noles out there that want to be here.

"To tell you the truth, I had the feeling already, and then seeing all the publicity and stuff", James said. Me talking to him, he was like my father talking to me.

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

During his introductory press conference at Florida State on Wednesday, Taggart said he had been open and honest with players and administrators about Florida State's interest. 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.

Taggart even wanted to play college football at Florida State, but he began his playing and coaching careers at Western Kentucky before spending four years rebuilding USF and this past season getting OR back on track.

Taggart said after hearing legendary coach Bobby Bowden speak about "faith, family and football", he implemented those principles in his coaching philosophy. "We want to have a diverse pool, a broad pool, and we will have that". "I know this is hard for him, hard for my family, moving once again".

On Monday, four-star quarterback recruit Tyler Shough posted a photo of Taggart and co-offensive coordinator Marcus Arroyo standing next to him during an in-home visit in Arizona. He'll have $5.5 million to pay assistant coaches.

"Things were going really well there in every aspect", Taggart said Wednesday.

It's no secret that FSU's 2018 signing class has fallen apart during the uncertainty surrounding Jimbo Fisher's future, and Taggart made it clear that his first order of business will be trying to "salvage" what he can from this class.

Taggart also hopes to return Florida State's defense to the tenacious group he was enamored with as a youngster.

Willie Taggart started his Florida State career with the Tomahawk Chop as he arrived to cheerleaders and the Seminoles marching band. We're not going to make excuses.

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