Head coach isn’t the only change to Florida State’s coaching staff.
After confirming Sunday that the university had no choice but to move on from Willie Taggart after less than two seasons on the job, FSU named long-time assistant Odell Haggins as interim head coach for the remainder of the 2019 season. With an on-field coaching position now available — FBS schools are permitted 11 countable coaches, including the head coach — the Seminoles have announced that analyst Jim Leavitt has been elevated to an unspecified assistant role on the defensive side of the ball.
As noted in the school’s release, the 11 countable coaches are the only staff members permitted to recruit off-campus and, along with four graduate assistants, to provide on-field instruction.
In mid-September of this year, amidst back-to-back second-half collapses, Taggart added Leavitt as a defensive analyst.
Leavitt served as Taggart’s defensive coordinator during the latter’s lone season as the head football coach at Oregon in 2017. He remained for one season after Mario Cristobal took over for Taggart before being ousted in February of this year.
The head coach at South Florida from 1997-2009, Leavitt’s unceremonious exit from the Bulls was the start of a five-year sabbatical from coaching. In February of 2015, Leavitt was named the defensive coordinator at Colorado and spent two seasons with the Buffaloes before leaving for the Ducks.