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Florida State hires Harlon Barnett as defensive coordinator

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Willie Taggart has filled an important position on his Florida State staff, hiring Harlon Barnett as defensive coordinator.

The university announced Barnett's appointment Sunday. He joins the Seminoles after 11 seasons at his alma mater, Michigan State. Barnett coached defensive backs throughout his tenure and was the co-defensive coordinator the past three seasons.

This past season the Spartans led the Big Ten and were second in the Football Bowl Subdivision in rushing defense, allowing 95.3 yards per game. Michigan State was also seventh in the nation in total defense, allowing 297.6 yards per game and 19th in scoring defense (20.0 points).

Barnett had a seven-year NFL career. He was drafted in the fourth round by Cleveland in 1990, where he played for three seasons followed by stops in New England and Minnesota.