Willie Taggart leaves OR for FSU, Cristobal named interim head coach

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The Willie Taggart era in OR was short-lived but his exit had a lasting effect on the Ducks.

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. While that is not at all unusual for a man tabbed with leading a blue blood program, Taggart elected to leave the Oregon Ducks without a head coach and, apparently, that is not going over well with everyone.

Taggart, 41, was officially announced as the next Seminoles coach Wednesday after one season at Oregon. "We watched the 'Noles first, then everyone else".

"Things were going really well there in every aspect", Taggart told reporters.

The Ducks were 7-5 in Taggart's lone season and will play in the December 16 Las Vegas Bowl against No. 25 Boise State.

Willie Taggart started his Florida State career with the Tomahawk Chop as he arrived to cheerleaders and the Seminoles marching band.

The Florida native is returning to the Sunshine State to coach Florida State.

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Florida State went 6-6 this year - its worst record during the Fisher era - and barely made a bowl game, winning its final three games of the season just to finish with a.500 record. It started last Thursday with the knowledge that FSU was interested in him, 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".

"This is not a rebuild, it's a realignment".

Taggart said it was a hard decision to leave OR, because the people were so nice there. "We're not going to blame anyone". "Excuse my language but we were a bunch of bad asses back in the days".

However, it's not just OR players that have been chiming in on Taggart's seeming change of heart. I know I let them down. "The timing is probably not right, but it's never right when it's time to leave". "When he expressed this was his dream job, that did it for me".

"Excuse my language, but I want a damn good defense".

". I wasn't going to leave it just for anything because it was flawless and my family loved it there and we had everything going the right way".

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