Texas A&M Football: FSU fans react to Jimbo Fisher’s departure

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

Texas A&M football has hired Jimbo Fisher away from Florida State. We sat down with the team at Chop Chat to discuss a crazy week on the coaching carousel.

Before Kevin Sumlin was formally fired the team at the Gig’em Gazette sat down with Kelvin Hunt, site expert at FanSided’s Chop Chat, to discuss the mood in Tallahassee and the Jimbo Fisher rumors. At that point the potential hiring of Fisher by Texas A&M seemed to be little more than that, rumors.

Hunt went on to say he expected Fisher to stay at Florida State “unless he just wants an absolute change of scenery”. It appears Fisher wanted to spend his Christmas elsewhere. His resignation on Friday cleared the way for the eight-year Florida State head coach to accept the Texas A&M job with a formal announcement expected Monday.

What is the current state of affairs in Tallahassee? We caught back up with Hunt to talk about the Fisher fallout and the future of the Florida State program.

Q: What word best describes the mood in Tallahassee right not concerning the football program?

Hunt: Actually, the mood right now seems to be upbeat and excited for new beginnings as the past week or so has seen things get toxic with the way Jimbo and FSU administration handled things. FSU plans to move quickly with it’s coaching hire and had already began that process before Fisher officially announced his decision. A lot of fans are appreciative for what Jimbo did in modernizing the FSU program and of course bringing our third national championship to Tallahassee. However, the way he stopped recruiting the last month and holding the program hostage has left a bad taste in many FSU fans mouths as well.

Q: When did Seminole fans start to think Fisher was serious about moving on?

Hunt: Probably around early this week and it really came to a head say Tuesday or Wednesday with the debacle at the Jimbo Fisher Call-In Show and losing three huge commitments within an hour or one another Wednesday night. Things became so toxic that one with common sense had to start believing he wouldn’t be wanted to back with how things went down.

What three things do Aggies need to know about Jimbo Fisher?

Hunt: 1. He’s a great recruiter, but it’ll be interesting to see how he builds his staff in Texas with very little recruiting ties to the state himself.

2. He can be extremely frustrating as a coach that refuses to makes obvious changes that need to be made. For instance, we said after like two weeks that there needed to be a change at punt returner for FSU this year and named WHO should be the replacement(DJ Matthews). Well, that didn’t happen for WEEKS and finally Matthews was inserted there and the punt return game has flourished every since. He settles for field goals WAY too much and does not understand the percentages of when to go for it on fourth down. He has punted the ball way too much even though he’s had huge talent advantages over most opponents.

3. Can he win consistently without a great QB? It’s true he has produced several first round draft picks and helped those players develop, but at the same time his overall record takes a big hit without Jameis Winston in the lineup. I know A&M currently has Grant Gunnell committed whos’ a big time talent, so maybe that’ll work out for him.

Q: Is there any reason to worry that Fisher can’t bring a title to Texas A&M like he did at Florida State?

Hunt: Absolutely you should worry. I’m not sure he was bringing another title to FSU if he had stayed. You should worry you have to compete against Nick Saban every season while he’s there, but you’re already familiar with that. But then again it’s arguable the ACC Atlantic division is tougher than any either division in the SEC.

Fisher has shown he can build a program back to elite status though, so maybe this change will help reignite the drive to prove people wrong since most believe he’s making a mistake in leaving FSU for A&M. This isn’t sour grapes or anything…but simply history and what’s proven coupled with the path to a title. I’d bet FSU would be in position to win a national title before A&M with Fisher there.

Who will be the next head coach at Florida State? Can he match what Fisher and Bobby Bowden have done?

It’s looking like it’s going to be Oregon’s Willie Taggart. A hire I would be extremely pleased with. He’s young, a great recruiter with Florida ties and has proven he can put together a great staff with the ability to turn programs around, so don’t let his overall record fool you. His offenses are very multiple and have averaged over 35 points per game and over six yards per play with inferior talent compared to what’s at FSU right now. He’ll be handed keys to a Lambo and it’s exciting to see what he can do there.

Next: Where does Sumlin rank in Aggie coaching history?

If it’s not Taggart, the other name in the mix is Virginia Tech’s Justin Fuente. I’d rather have Taggart with his Florida ties and ability to hit the ground running in recruiting. It’ll be tough to match what Fisher and Bowden accomplished, but FSU is a place where you can win A LOT of games without question.