The Jackson State Tigers have found their next head football coach, and they didn’t have to go very far.
On Tuesday, it was announced that T.C Taylor, currently the team’s wide receivers coach, will take the reins of the program following Saturday’s Celebration Bowl in Atlanta.
T.C. Taylor Replaces Deion Sanders At JSU
Taylor is also a former player for the Tigers having starred there from 1998-2001, so in other words, “He Is SWAC.”
Sanders recommended Taylor to athletics director Ashley Robinson, who announced the hire during Tuesday’s team meetings.
“I am excited to announce T.C. Taylor as our head coach. T.C.‘s passion and love for Jackson State is unquestioned. His fervent desire and hunger to lead his alma mater as head coach is unparalleled. His standard of excellence as a player as a JSU Tiger and his career trajectory as an assistant coach has prepared him for this opportunity. His vision and plan to continue the championship excellence of Jackson State football elevated him to the top of the search process. I look forward to him leading our program in 2023 and into the future. Let’s rally behind Coach Taylor by investing in our football program, and let’s continue to make history.”
An elated team cheered and hugged Taylor, who’s a great fit to replace Coach Prime.
An emotional and overwhelmed Taylor sat in the head coach chair and poured out raw emotion of in essence a dream come true.
“God is good man. Paying my dues. Patient. Letting God order my steps. Humble. It got me here today.”
“We’re gonna continue to dominate. We’re gonna continue to bring the best players in here. Because that’s what he’s all about. The best coaches. No step back, man.”
Sanders Vouched For Taylor After Demoting Him This Season
Following his announcement that he was taking the head coach position at Colorado, Sanders let it be known he’d love to see the school hire someone in house.
“My recommendation goes to T.C. They know how I feel about T.C. I want T.C., and several of the staff members to be retained.”
— Lane McGregor (@McgregorLane) December 13, 2022
Last season Taylor was the offensive coordinator of the Tigers, and while they won the SWAC and advanced to the Celebration Bowl, Sanders felt the offense became stale and lack creativity late in the season.
Therefore, he made a change and brought in Brett Bartolone from Nevada at the recommendation of his late friend Mike Leach. The “Air Raid of the South” was unstoppable, and Taylor’s work as the receivers coach is a huge reason why.
That elite group included Shane Hooks, Dallas Daniels, Kevin Coleman Jr., and Willie Gaines. The receivers played a huge role in Shedeur Sanders winning SWAC Offensive Player of the Year.
Taylor Will Look To Keep The Momentum Created By Coach Prime: Can He?
Replacing Sanders won’t be easy, but Taylor has potential and a firm base for success. He saw how to run a program for the last three years and what it takes daily to keep things going. And while he doesn’t possess the swag or aura of Deion, honestly, nobody does.
What Taylor has going for him is he’s SWAC through and through, and the school has had success getting better talent the last few seasons. You probably won’t see the five-stars like Travis Hunter or many four-stars coming to Jackson with Deion no longer there, but talent will still come and play hard.
In fact, Taylor got his first commitment on Tuesday as the top-rated JUCO quarterback, Philip Short, committed to the Tigers.
— LIGHT ON COLLEGE SPORTS (@LightOnSports) December 13, 2022
He could be Shedeur’s replacement.