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Willie Simmons, Florida A&M make key defensive moves as North Carolina, Jackson State loom

Simmons is adding James Colzie among other changes on the defensive side of the ball

As Willie Simmons prepares to lead Florida A&M into the 2022 season and his fifth at the helm, he’s making some key moves on the defensive side of the ball.

It’s a unit that oftentimes carried the Rattlers a year ago, when they opened with a narrow loss to Deion Sanders’ Jackson State Tigers, 7-6, in the Orange Blossom Classic and once again will face the Tigers Sept. 4 back in the Classic.

In advance of that opener, Simmons is tabbing James Colzie as the Rattlers’ defensive pass game coordinator and corners coach.

Most recently coaching in Canada, where was Saint Mary’s University’s defensive coordinator, as well as a stint at University of British Columbia where the team won a Canadian national championship, Colzie also has previous coaching experience at Florida International, Florida State, Valdosta State and West Georgia, among other programs.

Davon Morgan, previously the defensive coordinator at Elizabeth City (NCAA D-II), is FAMU’s new safeties coach. Billy Rolle is moving to the nickels coaching position.

The Rattlers, coming off a 9-3 campaign that included a Football Championship Subdivision playoffs berth, first face Mack Brown’s North Carolina Tar Heels Aug. 27.