Catching up on loose USF odds and ends ...
Stuck here in Miami for half a day with car trouble but should be headed back to Tampa shortly. In the meantime, I have time to patch together random updates I've been meaning to get to in the last few days.
-- There's been some conflicting reports on whether to consider defensive tackle Khyri Thornton as a USF commitment, but I got him on the phone this week and he reiterated that he will be a Bull this fall. Thornton is due in for an official visit next weekend, and said his teammate at Hargrave Military in Virginia, speedy Onterrio McCalebb, "most likely" will join him for a visit. McCalebb, a former four-star Auburn signee as a running back, has elite-level speed and will probably be a slot receiver or defensive back in college. He has big schools like Clemson and Alabama on him, but Thornton said USF might have a decent chance because McCalebb's family recently moved from Fort Meade to Tampa. Huge recruiting weekend in the next two days, with top local prospects like Ryne Giddins and Largo's Mike Marry and Mike Lang among those making official visits.
-- If Pitt's LeSean McCoy announces he's headed to the NFL Draft as expected, it will mean that only four members of this year's Big East All-Conference first team will be back next season. USF's George Selvie is perhaps the biggest name of the four, along with Cincy receiver Mardy Gilyard, Pitt tight end Nate Byham and Syracuse defensive tackle Arthur Jones. Again, USF has gotten a boost from opponents losing key players -- UConn's Donald Brown, Rutgers' Kenny Britt and so on ...
-- With the Super Bowl just weeks away, Raymond James Stadium gets an $85,000 treatment of new sod, which is a free upgrade for the Bucs and Bulls. Here's the story from today's Times.
-- Catching up on former Bulls: Basketball players Gianna Messina and Caitlyn Mitryk, who left the Bulls to play at the University of Tampa, have the Spartans off to a 10-2 start. Messina is UT's leading scorer at 10.4 points per game, and Mitryk has also started every game, averaging 6.5 points and a team-best 6.4 rebounds per game. Last week they went up against another former Bull, center Stephanie Sarosi, now at Nova Southeastern. Sarosi went 3-for-17 in a 21-point loss to UT, but rebounded with a double-double in her last game. ... Guard Jessica Jackson, now at Western Carolina, is starting but averaging just 4.5 points per game and hitting 26 percent of her 3-point attempts.
-- Former men's players? Zaronn Cann, in his second season at Eckerd College, is the Tritons' leading scorer at 12.5 points per game and leads the team with 6.5 rebounds per game. ... Remember how former Bulls guard Dante Curry had 21 points for Georgia State in his debut last month against Georgia Tech? He's only totaled 15 points in five games since ... Collin Dennis, now at North Texas, is averaging 9.4 points a game as a sometimes-starter. Dennis was nearly kicked off the team after going AWOL after New Year's Eve, but has rejoined the Mean Green's roster.