Bulls get commitment from Georgia TE
With Kevin Gidrey, Andrew Ketchel and Richard Kelly all seniors this fall, USF will have significant turnover at the hybrid TE/FB position in the offseason, but the Bulls have addressed that position by picking up a commitment Wednesday night from Tye Turner, a 6-foot-2, 245-pound senior from Griffin, Ga.
"He's a big, athletic kid -- blocks well and catches the ball well," said Griffin coach Steve DeVoursney, who said Turner chose the Bulls over offers from Western Kentucky -- USF's next opponent -- and Western Carolina, along with interest from Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest.
Turner, who carries a 3.7 grade-point average at Griffin and also plays basketball, played primarily fullback and H-back last season but is working as a tight end this fall, with three catches for 39 yards in his first two games. Griffin, located about 40 miles south of Atlanta, is undefeated and ranked as the No. 3 team in Georgia's Class 4A rankings. It's also the alma mater of Western Kentucky running back Bobby Rainey, who has rushed for 339 yards and three touchdowns in WKU's two lopsided losses.
USF has a strong connection to Griffin through offensive line coach Steve Shankweiler, who was Griffin's head coach in 1996-97 -- DeVoursney, now in his 10th season as head coach, joined Griffin's staff under Shankweiler. He said USF is also recruiting Griffin receiver Nile Daniel, who is a Kentucky commitment, as well as a former Griffin player in defensive lineman Toby Jackson, a former Georgia signee who is now at Navarro College in Texas.
By our count, USF now has 15 commitments toward its Class of 2011, so Skip Holtz is well ahead of the Bulls' usual schedule for picking up commitments. And as much as Holtz has talked about building a wall around the Tampa area for local recruits, none of those 15 players are from Hillsborough or Pinellas counties, with the closest being QB Stevie Weatherford of Land O'Lakes, lineman Thor Jozwiak of Lake Region and receiver Alex Mut of Punta Gorda.