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USF football coach Willie Taggart headed to Oregon

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USF is looking for a new head football coach, reports say.

Bulls’ coach Willie Taggart will be named the new head coach at the University of Oregon, the school confirmed Tuesday.

Taggart, who guided the Bulls to a 10-2 record this year, their best ever, is moving a long way away to Oregon, but Oregon is considered one of the schools where a coach can win a national title. However, Taggart will be leaving behind quarterback Quinton Flowers and running back Marlon Mack.

According to ESPN, Taggart and Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen were the finalists.

At USF, which plays in this year’s Birmingham Bowl against South Carolina, speculation immediately began about the new coach. Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin’s name surfaced, possibly because of the work his father Monte did as defensive coordinator of the Bulls. Former Bucs’ coach Greg Schiano – now the Ohio State defensive coordinator – came up.

Also to be mentioned were Texas coach Charlie Strong, Alabama line back Mario Cristobal and d\USFS co-offensive coordinator T. J. Weist. Weist will coach the Bulls in the Birmingham Bowl against South Carolina.

There was no word on how quickly Taggart would leave or if he would coach in the bowl.

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Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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