Bulls women receive votes in both major polls
In what can only be seen as a nod to recent history or a testament to Jose Fernandez's recruiting (or both), the Bulls women's basketball team has received votes in both major preseason polls.
USF, coming off consecutive NCAA Tournament second-round appearances, received 65 points in the inaugural USA Today Coaches Poll, and eight in the Associated Press poll. The Bulls' point total in the USA Today poll is the 26th-highest, putting the Bulls on the cusp of a formal ranking.
The Bulls lost the program's No. 2 career scorer (Courtney Williams) and all-time top rebounder (Alisia Jenkins) from last season's team, while veteran swing player Laura Ferreira remains sidelined indefinitely with a plantar fascia injury.
But Fernandez, arguably the nation's premier recruiter of international talent, signed five freshmen in the offseason including 6-foot-2 Hungary native Dorottya Nagy; considered her continent's No. 1 recruit by Blue Star Europe; Denmark national team member Enna Pehadzic, ranked 95th by ESPNW's Dan Olson in his Collegiate Girls Basketball Reports; and McDonald's All-America nominee Jazz Bond of Murfreesboro, Tenn.
"Even with the veteran team that we had last year and we went on that foreign tour (of Spain), we have more stuff put in now than we did with a veteran team," Fernandez said earlier in preseason camp. "So from a basketball IQ standpoint...we're farther ahead than we've ever been."
The Bulls open the season at home Nov. 15 against North Florida.