Coach T’s bus has been parked.
Florida Atlantic has fired head coach Willie Taggart after three seasons with the program. The news comes just hours after the Owls lost their season finale to Western Kentucky, dropping them to 5-7 on the year and out of bowl contention. Taggart went 15-18 through three years with the Owls. Andrew Ivins of 247 Sports first reported the news on Saturday night before the school officially confirmed it shortly afterwards.
FAU announces Willie Taggart out as head coach. pic.twitter.com/ns8dWDkGwJ— Richard Johnson (@RJ_Writes) November 27, 2022
After being let go by Florida State midway through the 2019 season, Taggart was brought down to Boca Raton, FL, to replace Lane Kiffin, who had led the program to two Conference USA titles before leaving for Ole Miss. He posted a 5-4 record during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, falling to Memphis in the Montgomery Bowl to end the year. The Owls didn’t improve upon the five-win mark the following season as his offenses struggled mightily at points throughout the year. After a 5-3 start, FAU spiraled on a four-game losing streak to end the year, knocking it out of bowl contention.
FAU once again had a disjointed campaign this fall, juxtaposing a handful of conference victories with embarrassing losses to the likes of UCF and Middle Tennessee State. Needing to win the season finale to go bowling and potentially saving Taggart’s job, the Owls fell to the Hilltoppers by way of a two-point conversion in overtime on Saturday. At that point, the once rising head coaching star’s fate was sealed.
FAU will now look for a new leader that can effectively guide the program as it transitions up to the AAC next year.