There is more than one SWAC coach drawing FBS speculation.
Florida A&M coach Willie Simmons, who has been identified as a rising star within college football coaching circles, was tied to the vacant University of South Florida job in recent days.
“With great success comes attention,” Simmons told The Tallahassee Democrat. “It’s not all about me. I’m blessed to be around a great group of coaches and players.
“Because of the success we’ve had here, my name comes up a lot when it comes to head coaches that have a chance to ascend in this profession.”
This season, Florida A&M is 7-2 and 5-1 in SWAC under Simmons and hoping to earn another FCS playoff berth. The Rattlers play at Alabama State (6-3, 4-2 SWAC) on Saturday looking to extend its current seven-game winning streak to eight.
Simmons told the newspaper he hasn’t concerned himself with rumors about USF. The coach said he hasn’t been contacted by the school about interest in the position.
“I’m always going to be where my feet are, he said. “And right now, they’re right here FAMU’s campus to prepare these guys for competition. “I have an agent for all that type of stuff and haven’t heard any rumblings or gotten any contact from them. Whenever the opportunity presents itself, we’ll address it then.”
ESPN senior writer Adam Rittenberg suggested in 2021 that Simmons, 42, could be sought after with “another strong season at FAMU” that could soon “put him in the mix for a Group of 5 job.”
Simmons has a career overall record of 51-23 in six seasons between Prairie View and Florida A&M.
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