Football updates, baseball and more ...
Just to update some football players on the injury bubble: senior tackle Jared Carnes, recovering from a knee bruise suffered in Wednesday's practice, is on the travel roster as the Bulls fly out this afternoon for Saturday's game at Auburn. So is special-teams ace Houston Hess, recovering from minor knee surgery two weeks ago, and junior Tyller Roberts, a top backup at cornerback who missed the opener with a hamstring injury.
Running back Moise Plancher, who had returned from knee surgery only to be sidelined by an ankle injury, will not make the trip, but true freshman Richard Kelly, the 245-pound fullback, will dress and could see his first action. That means four of USF's top five running backs -- everyone but starter Ben Williams -- will be freshmen: Mike Ford, Aston Samuels, Jamar Taylor and Kelly. Another true freshman who hasn't played, defensive tackle Terrell McClain, will also make the trip; coach Jim Leavitt reiterated this week that he expects McClain to play this season.
-- Wanted to get a baseball update in, as Lelo Prado's fall roster has firmed up with the start of fall classes. Prado made plenty of notable summer additions to his batting lineup from the junior college circuit, but didn't add as much on the pitching side, sticking with his returning nucleus of senior Daniel Thomas and sophomores Shawn Sanford and Matt Quevedo as his likely top three starters. Stephen Hunt, a freshman from Tampa Jesuit who was drafted and considered going pro, is the early favorite to take over the closer role that Sanford held most of last season.
We'd told you last month about outfielder Ryan Lockwood, who transferred in from Florida, and pitcher Andrew Salgueiro, who will sit out this season after transferring from Louisville. Salgueiro pitched for USF pitching coach Lazer Collazo at Miami Gulliver Prep in 2004, and another Gulliver pitcher is now on USF's roster: Michael Anzivino, a 6-foot-5, 210-pound right-hander who went 6-1 with a 4.27 ERA as a senior, with 39 strikeouts in 37 innings pitched.
Another incoming freshman who hasn't been reported as a Bulls signee is infielder Tommy Bates of Miami Westminster, the same private school that some guy named Alex Rodriguez once attended. Infielder Jordan McGillis, a freshman from Evansville, Ind., is the son of USF senior associate athletic director Bill McGillis.
The most intriguing name on the baseball roster? That's freshman pitcher Michael Franzese, whose father, Michael, was a guest speaker who addressed USF's athletes on campus this spring on the dangers of gambling for student-athletes. Franzese has written books about his past as a highly prominent member of New York's organized crime world, having spent seven years in prison and moved on to a changed life, with much of his time spent lecturing on college campuses. Franzese is a guy you can't wrap up in a paragraph, so read more about him on his official site here, including a blog entry from his USF stop here. I'll remind you guys to be smart with your blog comments.
-- USF's men's basketball schedule was released in full this week, but the Bulls haven't had any substantial talks with St. Pete Times Forum officials beyond indicating their desire to play at least one home game downtown this season. The most attractive date for the Bulls is a Sunday, Jan. 20 game against West Virginia; only five Bulls home games aren't conficts with the Tampa Bay Lightning, among them the Big East opener against Rutgers on Jan. 2, when a large number of students would still be home on holiday break.