Christmas wishes for two FSU football coaches and their bosses – Rivals.com (press release)
As the Warchant staff departs today for Shreveport, La., to cover Wednesday’s Independence Bowl, I thought it would be appropriate to offer Christmas wishes to the four central figures in Florida State’s football program: New head coach Willie Taggart, interim head coach Odell Haggins, athletics director Stan Wilcox and university president John Thrasher.
To Odell Haggins — A victory in the Independence Bowl, which would ensure him a perfect 2-0 record in his stint as Florida State’s interim football coach.
I’ll be honest, in my 15-plus years of covering Florida State, I never would have imagined that Haggins would be named the Seminoles’ head coach. Not because of any particular shortcomings, but because he has always seemed like the type of person who likes to work behind the scenes.
Then Dec. 2, 2017, happened. Just one day after Jimbo Fisher resigned, Haggins did an absolutely incredible job of leading FSU’s players through a difficult and emotional 24-hour period, guided them to a bowl-clinching victory and then shined like a star in the postgame press conference.
As I posted on Twitter when he accepted the interim position, no one has poured more of their blood, sweat and tears into Florida State’s football program during the last three decades than Odell Haggins. It was only fitting that he was showered with love from FSU’s players and fans during the first game of his head coaching career. Here’s hoping Wednesday brings an equally satisfying bookend.
To Willie Taggart — A welcome wagon filled with realistic expectations.
While everyone is understandably excited about the first-year head coach and the new era of Florida State Football, we also need to remember that the Seminoles are probably a long shot to make a run at championships during Taggart’s initial season in Tallahassee.
Not only do the