Willie Taggart surrenders play-calling duties as Florida State continues to struggle

Florida State coach Willie Taggart got the job last offseason and labeled his new offense as a philosophy of “lethal simplicity.” After nine games, that offense is now a little bit more complicated — and stagnant.

Taggart announced Monday that he will hand over play-calling duties to offensive coordinator Walt Bell after Bell called plays during Saturday’s 47-28 loss to NC State. It’s the first time in his eight-plus seasons as a head coach (Western Kentucky, South Florida, Oregon and Florida State) that Taggart will not be calling plays from the sideline.

“I thought Walt did a good job of calling plays,” Taggart said. “I’m sure there’s some plays — like every play-caller — there’s always some plays you would like to take back. But I thought he did well.”

The Seminoles racked up 445 yards and averaged 6.54 yards per play in the loss to the Wolfpack. The only other times that the Seminoles topped six yards per play this year were against Wake Forest and Louisville — the two worst defenses in the conference.

“I’m not a big ego guy,” he said. “I’m going to always do what’s best for our program. And just because I give up play(calling) doesn’t mean I’m not involved in it. I’m still going to be involved in everything and make suggestions when I need to. But I felt like this is what our football team needed.”

Bell worked as the offensive coordinator at Maryland from 2016-17, and at Arkansas State the two years prior to his time in College Park. 

The Seminoles play Notre Dame Saturday night in South Bend. 

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