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A look at the Florida State search process

The Florida State job has been open for 10 days now, and the search for Willie Taggart's replacement is well underway.

Seminoles AD David Coburn has repeatedly said he expects to have the position filled by the end of the month, which happens to be the end of college football's regular season. Coburn hired Glenn Sugiyama, a managing partner and global sports practice leader at DHR International, to run the search. This quote, from DHR International's press release announcing they had landed the Florida State search, seems relevant. Bold added.

“Florida State is one of the top 10 football programs in country and there is a tremendous amount of interest in the position,” said Mr. Sugiyama. “We are in the early stages of our process and we look to find the next leader of Seminole football within a month.”

Whether it be end of November or beginning of December is splitting hairs, but that quote tells us this search will run on Sugiyama's timeline, not Coburn's.

Sugiyama is a veteran of the coaching search business, you can't do his job for as long as he's done it without your own record of wins and losses. He directed the Florida Atlantic search that landed Lane Kiffin, Stanford's hiring of Jim Harbaugh and Purdue's hiring of Jeff Brohm. Others that are relegated to the bottom of the résumé include Charlie Weis at Kansas and Randy Edsall at Maryland.

DHR International doesn't get paid not to run a full, exhaustive search, so expect a number of candidates to sit for interviews. Sugiyama prides himself in keeping his searches quiet -- candidates are told if their name leaks, their candidacy is over -- so don't expect to hear much about it until Florida State nears a hire. While not always the case, sometimes, even though a deal is effectively done with one coach's agent, interviews will continue with other candidates. This is done for two reasons: 1) to let the search firm add to its rolodex of coaches with whom it has a relationship, therefore giving the firm a head start on future searches, and 2) to give the athletics director greater peace of mind that his choice is the right one.

Early word within the coaching profession has been that FSU seems very high on Mike Norvell, but otherwise the search has been fairly quiet.

In prior searches led by Sugiyama, as we get closer to a hire there are often leaks including positive messaging about the likely next head coach. We would expect the same here.

As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest coaching job information.