Willie Taggart’s coaching staff at Florida State continued to evolve today, as Jim Henry of the Tallahassee Democrat is reporting that the Seminoles have hired Wes McGriff, most recently the defensive coordinator at Ole Miss. He’s expected to coach defensive backs at FSU.
McGriff is a veteran whose coaching career began as a graduate assistant at Savannah State in 1990. From 1991-1992, he moved up to become SSU’s defensive backs coach, then ascending to the DC spot from 1993-1994.
Kentucky State then tapped McGriff to be its assistant head coach from 1995-1999, after which he spent 2000 as the secondary coach at Eastern Kentucky. In 2001, Lexington came calling, and he served as Kentucky’s running backs coach that year and as cornerbacks coach in 2002.
Then it was off to Baylor, where McGriff was the recruiting coordinator from 2003-2006, prior to coaching Miami’s DBs from 2007-2010. He assumed the same role in 2011 for Vanderbilt, and then in 2012 took a job with Ole Miss as the Rebels’ co-defensive coordinator.
McGriff then took an NFL gig, coaching the New Orleans Saints’ DBs from 2013-2015, inclining former Seminoles Patrick Williams and P.J. Williams. Then it was back to the SEC for McGriff, where he caught on as Auburn’s secondary coach and DC in 2016. Most recently, McGriff was back with Ole Miss as DC for 2017-2018, prior to being released.
This is another chapter in the Seminoles’ ever-revolving coaching carousel. After an almost absolute regime change after the 2017 season, the conclusion of the 2018 campaign saw OC Walt Bell’s departure for the UMass head coaching job, the hire of Kendal Briles to replace him (most likely along with OL coach Randy Clements), and the removal of Alonzo Hampton as special teams coordinator.
This move is interesting not only for its on-field implications, but also as it pertains to recruiting. McGriff is credited with securing a trio of former five-star prospects in the past: cornerback Brandon Harris to Miami in 2008, as well as outside linebacker Tony Conner and defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche in 2013, when the latter was the nation’s top prospect.
Former Ole Miss coordinator Wes McGriff has joined FSU’s staff. Was introduced at team meeting today. Another big hire for Coach Taggart.
— Jim Henry (@JimHenryTALLY) January 6, 2019