Willie Taggart got his defensive line coach on Tuesday when the program announced Odell Haggins will stay on as associate head coach and defensive line coach. But the new Florida State coach still needs to hire a defensive coordinator and a defensive backs coach and, boy, does he reportedly have some ideas there.
According to a report from Gridiron Now, Taggart is "engaging in courtship" with Wisconsin defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard to fill the same role at Florida State. Leonhard is a rising star in the profession, jumping into coaching as defensive backs coach in 2016 and was quickly promoted to defensive coordinator ahead of this season. In his first year calling plays, Leonhard helped the 12-1 Badgers lead the country in total defense, rank No. 3 nationally in yards per play and No. 3 in scoring defense.
There's no question that luring the 34-year-old Leonhard out of Madison would be a coup for Taggart, but a source tells FootballScoop that it would take something special to get him to leave his alma mater.
In addition to that, Josh Newberg of Noles247 reports that Taggart is seriously targeting Deion Sanders to serve as his defensive backs coach. Primetime has never coached at the college level, but Newberg notes that "there is mutual interest on both sides," though the talks are in the early discussion phase.
The program and Sanders certainly aren't backing away from the report.
Can you imagine this guy taking marching orders from Jim Leonhard?
Though it seems both hires are a ways off from actually happening, it sure would be interesting if they did.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.