In 2013, Jimbo Fisher led Florida State to an undefeated season and BCS championship.
Just four mostly successful years later, he’s leaving.
Fisher resigned Friday as the Seminoles’ head coach, one day before Florida State’s regular season finale against Louisiana-Monroe. He becomes only the fourth head coach to leave a program where he has won an Associated Press national championship and go directly into another college job, and the first since Johnny Majors went from Pittsburgh to Tennessee in 1977.
Fisher will not coach in Saturday’s game, which the 5-6 Seminoles must win to qualify for a bowl game. Florida State last missed out on college football’s postseason in 1981.
The writing was perhaps on the wall, or at least the lawn, when a Tallahassee Democrat reporter spotted this while outside Fisher’s house on Friday:
Texas A&M fired Kevin Sumlin earlier this week after the Aggies went 7-5 this regular season, their fourth consecutive year with at least five losses. The school must pay Sumlin $10.4 million as a buyout, an amount that will not change if he is hired somewhere else. According to ESPN, Texas A&M is expected to make Fisher one of the nation’s highest-paid head coaches at more than $7 million per year.
Fisher and Florida State had an unexpectedly tough 2017 season. The nation’s preseason No. 3 team, the Seminoles lost their season opener to Alabama and lost quarterback Deondre Francois to a season-ending knee injury in the process. Things spiraled from there. After a 31-28 home loss to Louisville on Oct. 21, Fisher got into a verbal scrap with a fan who complained about the composition of Fisher’s coaching staff. Six days later, the Seminoles hit rock bottom in a 35-3 loss at Boston College.
The rumors about Fisher’s impending departure had been bubbling for a while. During Fisher’s call-in radio show Wednesday, which was broadcast before a live audience, a fan asked him a question about loyalty before he was forced from the room by a team official. Fisher mustered little more than a smile in response.
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