USF names Willie Taggart as new head football coach - FOX 13 News

USF names Willie Taggart as new head football coach

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Less than a week after Skip Holtz was fired as USF's football coach, the search for his replacement is over.

The school has hired Willie Taggart, Western Kentucky's head coach.

Taggart has been the front-runner since the Bulls' search began.

The Bulls are coming off a nightmare of a season, one of the worst years in team history.

Willie Taggart grew up in Palmetto, playing quarterback for Manatee.

He was a record-setting quarterback at Western Kentucky, and in fact scored three touchdowns in the 1998 win over USF at Raymond James Stadium.

Willie Taggart is 36 years old, and in his three seasons as head coach of Western Kentucky, he took the Hilltoppers to their first bowl game. They're also playing in the Little Caesar's Bowl against Central Michigan December 26th.

Taggart is known for his recruiting skills. Area high school coaches love him -- he's got a dozen Bay Area players on his Western Kentucky team now.

Taggart set 11 records at Western Kentucky, and had his number retired. After graduating, he stayed with the Hilltoppers as an assistant coach, and was the offensive coordinator under Jack Harbaugh.

He then became the running backs coach at Stanford with head coach Jim Harbaugh. He was the main recruiter then for his home state of Florida and the southeast.

Taggart was named head coach of Western Kentucky in 20-10. He has just a couple wins his first season, but seven wins the last two seasons and the two bowl games.

We expect USF to make an official announcement at a news conference in the next few days.

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