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Meet Florida State’s new coaching staff

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Who will be coaching FSU in 2018?

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 06 Willie Taggart Introduction Photo by Logan Stanford/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Out with the old, in with the new.

After much speculation and discussion, Willie Taggart’s staff at Florida State is complete. With only one coach from the previous regime returning, it has taken quite some time for Taggart to put his staff together.

Let’s learn a little bit about the coaches who will be leading the Seminoles in 2018 and beyond.

Head Coach: Willie Taggart

A Florida kid at heart, Taggart played high school ball at Bradenton Manatee before enrolling at Western Kentucky. There, Taggart blossomed into a star quarterback and was a finalist for the Walter Payton Award, the FCS equivalent of the Heisman. After college, he stayed at Western Kentucky under the tutelage of Jack Harbaugh before eventually following Jack’s son, Jim Harbaugh, to Stanford.

In 2010, Taggart returned to Western Kentucky as head coach, leading the Hilltoppers to bowl eligibility in 2012. From there, Taggart returned to his home state, taking the head coaching job at South Florida. His first two seasons in Tampa were uninspiring, but the Bulls finished with an 18-7 record in his final two years. With the dynamic duo of Quinton Flowers and Marlon Mack in the backfield, Taggart fielded one of the nation’s best offenses in 2016.

Last season, Taggart accepted the head coaching job at Oregon, where he lead the Ducks to a 7-5 record in his only season in Eugene.

Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks Coach: Walt Bell

  • Age: 33
  • Alma Mater: Middle Tennessee State
  • Most Recent Employer: Maryland (offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach)
  • Replaces: Randy Sanders (52, now at East Tennessee State)

Bell played his college ball at Middle Tennessee State before spending time at Louisiana-Lafayette, Memphis, Oklahoma State, and Southern Miss in a variety of roles. Bell eventually found his way to North Carolina as wide receivers coach, where he was instrumental in the development of future first-round pick Eric Ebron.

From there, Bell landed at Arkansas State in his first full-time role as offensive coordinator. Under his tenure, the Red Wolves had one of the most explosive offenses in the nation. When D.J. Durkin took the head coach job at Maryland in 2016, he hired Bell as his offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach. The Terrapins had a terrific offense early in 2017 before injuries to the top quarterbacks on the depth chart.

Offensive Line Coach: Greg Frey

  • Age: 45
  • Alma Mater: Florida State
  • Most Recent Employer: Michigan (tackles/tight ends coach)
  • Replaces: Rick Trickett (70, current employment unknown)

Frey graduated from Florida State in 1996 and was a member of the 1993 national championship squad. He was instrumental in launching South Florida’s football program and worked with the Bulls as offensive line coach until 2006. From there, Frey landed at West Virginia, Michigan, and Indiana before eventually returning to Ann Arbor in 2017 with Jim Harbaugh’s staff. Frey has coached numerous NFL draft picks along the offensive line, including Taylor Lewan, Dan Feeney, and Jason Spriggs.

Tight Ends Coach: Telly Lockette

  • Age: 42
  • Alma Mater: Idaho State
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon State (running backs coach)
  • Replaces: Tim Brewster (57, now at Texas A&M)

A member of Idaho State’s Athletics Hall of Fame, Lockette began his coaching career at the high school level. He served as the head coach at Miami Central from 2008-12, where he got a chance to work with future Seminoles in Devonta Freeman and Dalvin Cook. From there, Lockette joined Taggart at South Florida as running backs coach and worked in the same role with Oregon State last season.

Running Backs Coach: Donte’ Pimpleton

  • Age: 38
  • Alma Mater: Western Kentucky
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon (running backs coach)
  • Replaces: Jay Graham (42, now at Texas A&M)

Similar to his head coach, Pimpleton was a star player at Western Kentucky, playing both quarterback and wide receiver. His first collegiate coaching experience came with Louisville, where he was an offensive quality control assistant. From there, Pimpleton joined Taggart for the first time at Western Kentucky as both an offensive quality control assistant and wide receivers coach. After a short stint at Kentucky Wesleyan, Pimpleton would rejoin Taggart at both South Florida and Oregon as running backs coach.

Wide Receivers Coach: David Kelly

  • Age: 61
  • Alma Mater: Furman
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon (assistant athletic director football recruiting operations)
  • Replaces: Lawrence Dawsey (50, current employment unknown)

Kelly’s coaching roots come from the high school level, where he was a successful head coach in the state of Georgia. He has experience working with several top collegiate programs, such as Georgia and LSU, and even with NFL teams as well. Kelly joined Taggart at South Florida as director of player personnel before following him to Oregon.

Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Backs Coach: Harlon Barnett

  • Age: 51
  • Alma Mater: Michigan State
  • Most Recent Employer: Michigan State (co-defensive coordinator/defensive backs coach)

Barnett played his college ball with Michigan State as a safety before enjoying a short career in the NFL. From there, Barnett had a short stint at the high school level before joining LSU and Cincinnati as a defensive coach. He has been with Michigan State, his alma mater, since 2007 as defensive backs coach. In 2015, Barnett was promoted to co-defensive coordinator and associate head coach.

Defensive Ends Coach: Mark Snyder

  • Age: 53
  • Alma Mater: Marshall
  • Most Recent Employer: Michigan State (linebackers/special teams coach)
  • Replaces: Brad Lawing (60, current employment unknown)

An All-American safety at Marshall, Snyder coached at a variety of schools before joining Jim Tressel’s staff at Ohio State in 2001 as defensive coordinator. Snyder was an instrumental piece in Ohio State’s 2002 national championship season. From there, Snyder took the head coach job at Marshall, his alma mater. After resigning from his post at Marshall in 2009, Snyder worked at South Florida and Texas A&M as a defensive coordinator, and Michigan State as linebackers coach.

Defensive Tackles Coach: Odell Haggins

  • Age: 50
  • Alma Mater: Florida State
  • Most Recent Employer: Florida State (defensive tackles/associate head coach)

A man who needs no introduction, Haggins played his college ball at Florida State and has been a coach with the Seminoles since 1994. Haggins has produced many future NFL stars along the defensive line, such as Eddie Goldman, Darnell Dockett, and Timmy Jernigan. He served as interim head coach last season after Fisher’s departure, finishing with a perfect 2-0 record with wins over Louisiana-Monroe and Southern Miss.

Linebackers Coach: Raymond Woodie

  • Age: 44
  • Alma Mater: Bethune-Cookman
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon (outside linebackers/special teams coach)
  • Replaces: Bill Miller (61, current employment unknown)

A longtime high school head coach in the state of Florida, Woodie got his first collegiate job on Taggart’s staff at Western Kentucky in 2010 as defensive ends coach. Woodie has been with Taggart ever since, following him to both South Florida and Oregon in a variety of roles, from linebackers coach to defensive coordinator.

Defensive Backs/Special Teams Coach: Alonzo Hampton

  • Age: 43
  • Alma Mater: Louisiana-Monroe
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon (defensive analyst)

After playing collegiately at Louisiana-Monroe, Hampton played in the NFL and NFL Europe before coaching at Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Hampton first joined Taggart’s staff at Western Kentucky and followed him to South Florida after a short stint at the high school level. At Oregon last year, he served in an off-the-field role.

Strength and Conditioning Coach: Irele Oderinde

  • Age: 37
  • Alma Mater: Western Kentucky
  • Most Recent Employer: Oregon (strength & conditioning coach)
  • Replaces: Vic Vitoria (39, current employment unknown)

A former Western Kentucky nose tackle, Oderinde started as an assistant strength and conditioning coach with the Hilltoppers after his collegiate career was over. From here, he spent time at Notre Dame, South Carolina, and West Virginia before joining Taggart’s staff at South Florida and Oregon.