Florida A&M leaders have been working behind the scenes and public pleas have been made by alums to keep its head coach.
The HBCU national championship-winning coach was offered a position on the staff of new Duke football coach Manny Diaz. The news was first reported Thursday night by the YouTube channel Offscript.
The school is reportedly aiming to increase Simmons’ yearly salary by $100,000 along with bonuses for Simmons and his staff, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
The Florida A&M coach previously signed a five-year, 1.5 million contract in 2017 and then an extension in 2025 that runs through the end of the 2025 season.
The FAMU National Alumni Association announced on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, that at an emergency meeting, it had committed $25,000 per year for the next three years to “assist in the compensation of football coaches.”
The FAMU NAA indicated that it had raised more than $65,000 for that effort.
Simmons, who just completed his fourth season at Florida A&M, guided the program to its first SWAC East title, a conference championship, and won the Celebration Bowl this season. He has an overall record of 66-24 overall at Prairie View and FAMU. The Rattlers have gone 45-13 under his leadership, including three different seasons with nine wins.
Simmons and Diaz both worked on the same staff at Middle Tennessee State from 2007 to 2009. He began his coaching career as an assistant at Clemson, where he played quarterback.
Reports indicated that Florida A&M has asked Simmons for the weekend to put together a contract competitive enough to keep him and that a decision was expected on Monday.