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This should be a popular move in Tallahassee.

On Tuesday, new Florida State head coach Willie Taggart announced that he would be retaining defensive line and interim head coach Odell Haggins on his staff.

From Florida State’s statement on the move:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State head coach Willie Taggart announced Tuesday that long-time FSU assistant coach Odell Haggins will coach the defensive line and be the associate head coach on Coach Taggart’s new staff.

“Coach Haggins is Garnet and Gold through-and-through,” Coach Taggart said. “He has done a remarkable job leading our team through the last game of the regular season and preparations for the Independence Bowl, and I have noticed how positively the student-athletes respond to him. He has an impressive resume of on-field results from his defensive linemen, but I’ve also been impressed with his ability to connect with our team on a personal level. He understands Florida State better than anyone, which will be a huge benefit to all of us as we implement our program at FSU.”

Haggins was named Florida State’s interim head coach on Dec. 1, 2017, and the next day led the Seminoles to a 42-10 victory over ULM that clinched bowl eligibility for the 36th straight year. Haggins was promoted to associate head coach in 2014 and has helped FSU post a 234-72-1 (.764) record in his time on staff.

“I am a Seminole for life,” Coach Haggins said. “I’m thankful to Coach Taggart for giving me the opportunity to remain at my alma mater and am excited to be at Florida State University. It has been an incredible blessing to coach at the school I played at and have been coaching at most of my life. Coach Taggart and I are on the same page with our focus on doing the best we can to be a mentor and a father figure to these student-athletes. Everything we do is to help guide them as they develop on and off the field.”

Next season will mark Haggins’ 25th at the school where he starred on the defensive line from 1986-89. He began his career as a tight ends/offensive line coach in 1994 with the Seminoles and took over the interior defensive line duties in 1996, where he has remained a fixture and helped the Seminoles to a pair of national titles in 1999 and 2013.

Haggins, a former Florida State player, has been with the team as a coach for over 20 years. The former defensive tackle is clearly a popular figure in the Seminoles locker room, and keeping him on staff is definitely a major positive for Taggart in trying to keep some continuity with the talented Florida State players.

Florida State is set to play in the Independence Bowl against Southern Miss on Wednesday. Haggins has continued to act in an interim head coaching capacity has the Seminoles have prepared for that game.

Willie Taggart may have made his biggest coaching move yet with latest announcement AP Photo/Mark Wallheiser
Bo was born in Atlanta, GA, and has always been a savvy sports follower. He attended Georgia Tech and has previously worked with ESPN TrueHoop, HawksHoop, and the Georgia Tech Newsroom. He covers national college football for FanBuzz.
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