South Florida head coach was forged across Manatee County. The Palmetto native starred at Manatee in Bradenton before going on to an All-American career as a quarterback at Western Kentucky. Next week, he’ll make the trip back across the Sunshine Skyway Bridge from Tampa for a couple days back home.
The Bulls officially announced a two-day camp and clinic in Manatee County on Tuesday, beginning with a coaching clinic Monday in Bradenton and concluding with a youth camp the next day in Palmetto. The two events, which are directed to youth coaches and players, are both free.
“The game of football changed my life,” Taggart said in a statement, “and I’m blessed to be able to return home and provide some opportunities to the kids in the area that I didn’t have growing up.”
The coaching clinic is available for all those who coach children between first and eighth grade, and will go from 6-9 p.m. at the 13th Avenue Dream Center. The camp, available for first- through eighth-graders, will run from 9 a.m. until noon at Lincoln Park, across the street from Taggart’s mother’s home.
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Coaches and campers can register at USFFootballCamps.com. On-site registration is available for the youth camp beginning at 8 a.m.
Taggart is far from the only area connection on South Florida’s coaching staff. Defensive coordinator Raymond Woodie played at Palmetto and Bethune-Cookman before returning to coach both at Bayshore and the Tigers. Senior offensive consultant Joe Kinnan led the Hurricanes to five state championships as head coach, including a pair with Taggart as his quarterback.
“We’re dealing with some of the greatest role models to ever come out of Manatee County,” Manatee County commissioner Charles Smith said in a statement. “Coach Taggart’s work will change lives in this community. He and his staff grew up here and made something positive of themselves. It’s important for the young children of the community to understand they can be anything they want. Seeing these USF leaders will keep our children out of trouble and set a high bar to follow.”