Florida State set a self-imposed deadline of the end of the month to hire Willie Taggart’s replacement. As I write this near midday on the 27th, Florida State still believes it will hit that deadline.

Of course, the timing of Florida State’s impending hire is irrelevant as long as the school (and the search firm DHR International) lands the right coach, and sources told FootballScoop that the Seminoles have reached out to, and thus far come up empty, on all the big names you’d expect: James Franklin, Matt Campbell, the brothers Stoops, Matt Rhule.

One big-name coach who has consistently hovered around the process is Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly. Whether he’s really ready for a new challenge after 10 seasons in South Bend or if his agent is simply angling for an extension at Notre Dame we can’t say, but multiple well-connected sources have connected Kelly to this search.

Florida State has also been in contact with Mike Norvell’s camp sources tell FootballScoop. Norvell’s Tigers play an important game with Memphis on Friday, and then the AAC championship on Dec. 7. A win there could send them to the Cotton Bowl. All this to say: Norvell could very well be the next Florida State head coach, but A) it doesn’t seem as if that deal would be done by the end of the month, and B) Florida State is going to make the bigger names on their list tell them no first.

Sources tell FootballScoop Lane Kiffin has been vetted, as has Indiana head coach Tom Allen. On campus, players are beginning to ask if Odell Haggins could be the next Ed Orgeron.

As we wrote early in the process, Glenn Sugiyama, who is running this search, prides himself on no leaks. We’re told this search has been exhaustive, but many of those involved don’t want the word out.

Expect to begin to see some clarity on this one in the coming days. It will be interesting to see if FSU goes with any of these more than qualified coaches or if they try to overthink it and come up with the one guy no one is talking about.

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

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National columnist - Zach joined the staff in 2012...and has been attempting to improve Doug and Scott's writing ability ever since (to little avail). Outside of football season, you can find him watching the San Antonio Spurs reading Game of Thrones fan theories.