Sports Shorts

* The Bucs won their first home game of the season last Sunday with that 30-27 victory over the Arizona Cardinals. The impact of such a disappointing start was more than evident outside the lines: Many fans showed up disguised as empty seats. The home crowd was generously announced as 40,038, the smallest in 23 years. It was still more than USF-Temple, but not that much more.

* “Licht’s Brigade.” That’s one of the partisan banners draping RJ for Bucs games. It checked a couple of boxes: word play and fan support. But GM Jason Licht?

* Who will FSU hire to replace Willie Taggart? Someone with the surname of Stoops? The next hot-shot at a lower-profile school? Seemingly discounted is the only coach with an undefeated record in leading the Noles. That’s long-time (26 years) assistant Odell Haggins, 52. He played at FSU for Bobby Bowden. He also played in the NFL, including a Super Bowl with the Buffalo Bills. He’s a member of FSU’s athletics hall of fame. He’s beloved by players and alums. He took over for Jimbo Fisher two years ago on an interim basis and went 2-0, including a bowl win. This year, after taking over for Taggart, he’s coaching the final three games. The first of those came last Saturday, a 38-31 road win at Boston College. He’s now 3-0. If he wins the next two, including later this month in Gainesville against Florida, could they pass him over again, because  boosters want a big name to come in and restore the program to national prominence? 

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