Published On: Thu, Dec 12th, 2019

FAU officially announces Willie Taggart as new head football coach

Photo provided by FAU Football via Twitter

Only three days after FAU Vice President and Director of Athletics Brian White announced that former head football coach Lane Kiffin had resigned to become the new head coach at the University of Mississippi,  White was back on Wednesday to officially declare Willie Taggart as the Owls new head football coach.

Taggart, 43, was formerly the head coach of Western Kentucky University (WKU) from 2010 to 2012, the University of South Florida (USF) from 2013 to 2016, the University of Oregon in 2017 and most recently, Florida State University (FSU) from 2018 to 2019. With FSU in 2018, Taggart had the 11th-ranked recruiting class in the nation and led the team’s offense to pass for 3,241 yards, which was the most by an offense under a first-year head coach in the university’s history.

As a Florida native, Taggart has been considered one of the best offensive minds in the country, according to FAU Sports. However, that was not the only reason why White wanted to hire him.

“Coach Taggart is a proven program builder who will develop strong relationships with our student-athletes and develop them as future leaders,” White said. “His deep relationships around the state of Florida and the nation will be vital in recruiting as well.”

When Taggart had his first meeting with the FAU football team Wednesday night, some traits he expressed to the players that he brings with him include longevity and player development within the program, as well as continuing the championship culture that Kiffin had started.  With an overall head coaching record of 56-62, Taggart hopes to regain a positive record that he believes will come with long-term success.

“I want to start off by letting you all know, straight up, I’m here for the long haul,” Taggart said, as he opened up the team meeting. “This is one of the top up and coming football programs in the country and the expectation to win a championship around here will continue.”

The introductory press conference for Taggart as FAU’s sixth head coach in program history will be at 3:30 p.m. ET and can be viewed on the FAU Athletics Facebook page here.

About the Author

- Justin Baronoff is currently a junior at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL. He is pursuing a major in Multimedia Journalism, where he hopes to some day write for major news media publications, such as the New York Times, ESPN, or even Billboard Magazine. In high school, Justin wrote for his high school newspaper for three years where he was a staff reporter for the first two years before becoming the Sports Editor in his final year. At FAU during the first semester of his sophomore year, he began interning for, where he wrote about and covered his favorite professional football team, the New York Jets, and his favorite professional basketball team, the New York Knicks. Then during his second semester of his sophomore year, he began writing for FAU's student newspaper, the University Press, as a contributing writer. Justin now serves a News Writer Intern for the Boca Raton Tribune.

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