Florida State has completed a month-long coaching search by hiring Memphis coach Mike Norvell on Saturday night.
ESPN first reported the hire, and the Osceola has confirmed that Norvell will be the Seminoles’ next coach.
FSU has set a press conference for Sunday at noon but did not state who the head coach will be.
Norvell went 38-15 in four seasons at Memphis, including three in the American Athletic Conference title game. Featuring a top-10 offense, Memphis went 12-1 and defeated Cincinnati in Saturday’s league title game.
In his postgame press conference on Saturday night, Norvell told reporters that he plans to coach Memphis State in the bowl game – possibly the Cotton Bowl on Dec. 28. That is a logistical challenge as Norvell will have to recruit for FSU – with an early signing day ahead beginning Dec. 18 – and hire a staff while also leading a Memphis team that is 540 miles away.
The 38-year-old Norvell replaces Willie Taggart, who was dismissed after he went 9-12 in 2018 as well as three-quarters of the 2019 season.
FSU turns to Norvell to fix up a program that is six years removed from a national championship but is in need of repairs after falling apart late in the Jimbo Fisher years and then suffering through a 9-12 record with Taggart. The Seminoles are 2-1 under interim head coach Odell Haggins, who will lead the team in the bowl game.
Norvell must hit the ground running immediately, shoring up FSU’s current commitments while looking to secure others ahead of the early signing period (which begins Dec. 18). FSU has a top 25 class according to 247Sports, a group that features four-star quarterback Jeff Sims, four-star receiver Malachi Wideman and four-star running back Lawrance Toafili.
Terms of Norvell’s deal with Florida State have not yet been released. Norvell earned $2.6 million in 2019 at Memphis and has a $500,000 buyout.
While Norvell lacks head coaching experience at the Power 5 level, he has been the offensive coordinator at Arizona State and the co-offensive coordinator/receivers coach at Pittsburgh.
FSU officials reportedly talked to Penn State’s James Franklin, Iowa State’s Matt Campbell and Minnesota’s P.J. Fleck, and each of those coaches reached an agreement to a contract extension in recent weeks. Former Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops was an early consideration but he has opted instead to coach the XFL’s Dallas franchise in the spring of 2020.
More on Mike Norvell
Below is Norvell’s press conference after the win over Cincinnati on Saturday