OC Taylor not expected back at Jesuit (Updated 12:15 p.m.)



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Tue. January 25, 2011 | Joey Knight | Email

Jesuit football coach James Harrell confirmed today offensive coordinator Chris Taylor won't return in the same capacity, but will be invited to remain on the Tigers staff.

Harrell said former University of Florida and NFL running back James Jones, Harrell's teammate with the Detroit Lions, is Taylor's likely successor.

Jesuit finished 11-1 in Taylor's lone season as coordinator, but the Tigers managed a season-low point total in a 21-7 second-round playoff loss to Robinson, when injured starting QB Patton Chillura exited midway through the game.

Taylor, reached via cell phone, declined to comment extensively, but indicated his return to the staff is unlikely.

"If I have a comment, it's only that I enjoyed my experience working with Jesuit," he said. "It's a terrific place for young men. If I had a son I'd want him to go to Jesuit."

Harrell hadn't spoken with Taylor as of Tuesday morning.

"He's always welcome back on our staff," Harrell told the Times. "That's up to him, just what capacity will be his decision, but we're probably going to move in a different direction in terms of who's going to be the coordinator and passing-game coordinator."

Taylor, who helped lead Armwood to a pair of state titles and three state finals appearances in 13 seasons as Hawks coordinator, oversaw a balanced Tigers offense predicated on the play-action pass and rapid evolution of Chillura, a first-year starter. Jesuit (11-1) averaged 170.5 passing and 132 rushing yards in 2010. 

But Harrell said he wants to incorporate more of a pro-style offense featuring two-back and two-tight-end sets, preferably with coaches who have competed on the pro level installing it. To that end, Harrell said he'd also like longtime NFL quarterback Vinny Testaverde, who volunteered periodically with the Tigers last season, to have more input in the game planning.

"(Taylor) did a heck of a job for us and I wish him the best of luck if he decides he doesn't want to come back and help us," Harrell said. "We're just moving forward in a different direction. It happens all the time in this industry."

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