Daniels looks sharp in rain-shortened scrimmage
VERO BEACH -- Approaching storms cut short USF's second football scrimmage of fall about 30 plays shorter than anticipated, but quarterback B.J. Daniels led the No. 1 offense to two touchdown drives as the team wrapped up 11 days at the Vero Beach Sports Village.
"We've got a tired football team right now," coach Skip Holtz said. "This is Practice 16, I believe. We're tired, beat up, we've got some bumps and bruises, everybody's sore, but I'm really proud of the way they pushed through with this camp. ... I think it's been a really productive camp, from what we wanted to get done and the goals we had coming into it."
Daniels went 5-for5 for 58 yards on his opening drive, which ended with a 2-yard touchdown run by Marcus Shaw, and Daniels finished the scrimmage with a 6-yard scoring pass to walk-on fullback Spencer Cavalieri, a play set up by a 53-yard halfback toss from Demetris Murray to Sterling Griffin.
Bobby Eveld, trailing redshirt freshman Matt Floyd for the backup QB job, looked solid with the No. 3 and 2 offenses, going 8-for-10 for 112 yards, including a 13-yard touchdown to receiver Ruben Gonzalez. Floyd wasn't as sharp on Saturday, going 1-for-5 for 22 yards and an interception in his two drives, but both were against the No. 1 defense, and he had two passes dropped by receivers and a completion negated by penalty.
Holtz said after the scrimmage that if Floyd establishes himself as the No. 2 quarterback, he'd like to redshirt Eveld, giving him another year as potential starter after Daniels graduates.
"If Matt were to be the No. 2, I would probably try to redshirt Bobby, since he has a redshirt year available," Holtz said. "I'm not going to use a year just to play a mop-up role as a 3. I would try to go into it that way if Matt were to win the job, but if Bobby's the better quarterback, then I'll play Bobby."
There wasn't a standout game at running back, with several players finishing with comparable numbers -- Marcus Shaw, sharing duties with Murray on the No. 1 offense, ran the ball six times on his first drive, getting 24 yards and his short touchdown. Murray rushed five times for 16 yards, Lindsey Lamar had 15 on six carries and Willie Davis had 13 yards on four carries; Mike Pierre, working with the No. 3 offense against the No. 3 defense, had four carries for 17 yards and a 2-yard touchdown.
In the only possession with the No. 1 offense against the No. 1 defense, the defense prevailed, forcing a Daniels incompletion, with Kayvon Webster (who had an interception) stopping Andre Davis for a 4-yard gain. On third and 6, Daniels was sacked for a loss by safety Ernie Tabuteau for the three-and-out series.
What started as a sunny afternoon was cut short by heavy storms and winds that drenched the baseball fields minutes after the scrimmage was stopped after 67 plays; Holtz had said he wanted to get in 100. Friday's practice was also cancelled by bad weather, so the Bulls will have two-a-days on campus on Monday and Wednesday this week.
USF's Fan Fest is set for Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Raymond James Stadium, and the event will happen rain or shine, with contingency plans to have autograph tables set up in covered parts of the stadium if rain should come in Tampa.