Florida State

Alabama’s Jeremy Pruitt should be second call FSU makes to replace Fisher

Jeremy Pruitt

The first time I met Jeremy Pruitt, I was still coaching high school football and he had just become the defensive coordinator at Florida State. I can remember several of my coaching buddies telling me about Pruitt and how far up he was going to go.

When you coach high school football in Florida, you become immune to seeing college coaches on campus, but Pruitt was different. At first, I thought he was just a great salesman; the more I got to know him, I realized this dude is the real deal.

With Jimbo Fisher leaving FSU, I know that Willie Taggart is widely believed to be the Seminoles’ top choice to replace him. If Taggart even hesitates, the next call should go to Pruitt.

It was only 11 years ago that Pruitt was the defensive coordinator at a HIGH SCHOOL (Hoover) in Alabama. Since then, he’s been a national championship defensive coach at Alabama, a national championship defensive coordinator at FSU, a defensive coordinator at Georgia, and is currently the defensive coordinator back at Alabama where he was one play away from earning his third national championship.

Let’s think about this for a minute.

This is a guy who was with Nick Saban, left Saban to find his own high level of success with Fisher and then Mark Richt, and then had Saban welcome him back in an even bigger role. How special of a coach must you be for Saban to bring you back, after leaving him, and then be given the authority to run his defense – like Kirby Smart and Will Muschamp.

College football today is made up of good coaches OR great recruiters. Take a look at most staffs. If you are familiar with the names, you are easily able to decipher which role each coach fills.

Pruitt is one of the few who are both. Not only is Pruitt great with X’s-and-O’s and great at developing game plans, he is a master recruiter. Pruitt is one of the best recruiters in all of college football.

It takes a certain type of coach to be able to recruit Florida; there are only a dozen or so who can pull it off year-after-year and Pruitt is one of those guys. I have seen high school superstars completely open up to Pruitt in a matter of minutes; he has a sincerity about him players respond to.

Florida State will be calling to gauge his interest, and from what I know, Pruitt is certainly interested in going back to Tallahassee. Taggart may be the perceived first choice, but the folks at Florida State know what kind of “get” Jeremy Pruitt would be.

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