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October 31, 2018

Willie Taggart

Greensboro, North Carolina

WILLIE TAGGART: We're up against another tough opponent, another really good quarterback. Our guys have faced back-to-back two outstanding quarterbacks, a team that's on a two-game losing streak, so we know they're going to be hungry, and they're at home and hungry to get back in the winning column. I know our guys are hungry and want to work to get back in the winning column after last week. A tough opponent, a tough environment to play in, and we've got to bring our "A" game going up there.

Q. Obviously with other programs that you've been with and with your time that you were at South Florida where there was some adversity and you overcame that and found a way to win and obviously recruited the guys that you needed, what can you say about the Florida State situation right now and being in there in your first year? Obviously fans want to win, there's a rich tradition there. How have you been kind of responding to the adversity and kind of taking back from maybe some of the other experiences you've had?
WILLIE TAGGART: Well, you've got to stay the course. You've got to stay the course and what you believe in and how you do things, knowing that things don't happen overnight. They're not going to change overnight. And when you're changing a coach, that definitely doesn't change. Understanding those things, I think the key is as long as there's progress while you're trying to get to where you're going, then things will eventually turn.

I know when I say progress, sometimes you don't necessarily see it on the football field, you see it in other areas, and then you also have got to understand your team and where you're at and what's holding us back, and you try to work on those things daily, knowing that, again, it's not going to happen overnight, but you've got to stay true to who you are and what you're doing and make sure you're constantly evaluating everything, but don't steer off. I think that's why we got to where we did at other places, because we didn't, and I think here at Florida State, like you said, it's such a rich tradition, and our fans haven't been in this position before. All this is new to them, too, so they're learning. We need them to continue to have expectations because that's how we're going to get back to where we need to be quicker, but it's not -- the situation we're in now is not like those situations when we took over. Those situations that we took over at Western Kentucky was on a 20-game losing streak. I went to South Florida we had lost three games the year before I got there.

This situation is not like those from that standpoint. I think it's still down and out because of our storied tradition and the high expectations we have for our University and our football team. But we've got to work. We've got to recruit, and we've got to keep teaching.

Q. And then as far as the buy-in when you come into a program of guys that were recruited by a different regime there and whatnot, just what you can say about building a culture, building an environment and seeing what guys are there for the long haul and maybe some of the guys that are harder to get to right away.
WILLIE TAGGART: Yeah, those things happen. Some guys find out if they want to be a part of it or not. You come in and you set the foundation of what you want that culture to be, knowing that it's not going to change as soon as you set the foundation, but you work towards those things daily and you hold kids and coaches accountable to living up to those expectations we have for our culture. You know it's not going to change over time. You know there's going to be some guys that can't handle it. They've been engrained in a certain kind of coach, or sometimes they just can't get themselves out of it. But you still work towards what you want and train them. You probably can make those guys that's been in that culture for so long, make them a little better, but you're not going to completely change them, and then the younger guys, they're going to change with time.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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