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Willie Taggart Is Gone, But The Expectations For A New Coach Shouldn’t Be

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Yes USF lost a great coach that turned the program around. But that talent remains, and needs to think of nothing less than perfection in 2017.

NCAA Football: Central Florida at South Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

He gone.

Willie Taggart is no longer the head football coach at the University of South Florida. He has accepted the same position at the University of Oregon. Let’s take a live look at #BullsNation right now:

Sure, Taggart has improved his win total every year that he was in Tampa. Yea, he just coached the team that broke the school record for wins in a season with 10. And I get it, he made an awesome bus driving video in his first year.

But you know what I say to anyone and everyone up in arms about Coach T. taking said bus across the country (from gorgeous Tampa to rainy Oregon, btw)?

*In my Aaron Rodgers voice* R-E-L-A-X

Everything will be fine! Coach Taggart did what he was brought here to do, which was improve the team and bring a winning culture to USF. Everyone is appreciative of what he accomplished, and I’d like to thank him personally for offering me a scholarship after I transferred from Penn State (my parents are happy about free school, too).

USF Fam, it’s time to move on. No pouting. No sulking. When I say it’s time to move on, I mean it’s time to look forward at the future of this program with excitement. Hell, in about three weeks USF has the chance to beat an SEC team in a bowl game to take their win total to 11 games. You know why else everyone should be pumped about the future of USF football? Because even though Coach Taggart is not coming back, guess who is…

Coach Taggart’s recruits.

That’s right! Willie definitely took care of business on the recruiting trail. There is a ton of talent on the current roster, almost all of which is coming back in 2017. What coach wouldn’t want to take over a Top 10 nationally-ranked offense? What coach wouldn’t want to see over a defense that returns nearly every starting player (with plenty of room for improvement)? I don’t know a coach that dislikes the idea of being favored (and rightly so) in every game on their schedule.

President Judy Genshaft and athletic director Mark Harlan have a monumental task on their hands, which is hiring the right guy to take over all of the talent that USF has at the moment, and I trust them to rise to the occasion. That’s why they get paid the big bucks. The opportunity that this football program has next year is practically a once-in-a-lifetime thing, and must be handled like one.

The Bulls have to get someone that will develop and coach the talent already on the roster into champions. A coach that the players buy into and a coach that buys into his players. With an out-of-conference schedule that includes San Jose State, Stony Brook, Illinois, and UMass, 2017 is set up perfectly for South Florida.

Think about it, it’s 13-0 or bust next year. Is that a lot of unfair pressure? Sure, but I’m just keeping it real. With how this season went and the number of players coming back, I fully expect the Bulls to enter the 2017 season ranked. Hire the right guy, and at this time next year we’ll be talking about the first undefeated football season in USF history, the first conference championship football team in USF history, the first New Year’s 6 bowl team in USF history, and the first team to finish ranked in the Top 10.

What I’m trying to say by allllllll of this, is that it’s time to go all in on USF football. Don’t worry about how long a coach is going to stay, because unless you’re Alabama or an NFL team (which I can confirm that USF is neither), you’re at risk of having your head coach leave. But have a season like the one I just outlined, and watch this football program and university explode into everything we want and expect it to be.

“Coaches come and go, but trophies stand forever.”

Kobe Bryant.

P.S.- Someone call Judy and let her know I’m available to interview for the head coaching job. Pretty sure every recruit I helped host during my college days got signed (ask them if they had a good time), and Lord knows the La$er$how will be in full effect. Not sure why I haven’t heard from her or Harlan yet…