Notes: Bucs release ex-Bulls DE Buie
NFL rosters must be cut from 80 to 75 by Tuesday, and former USF defensive end Jarriett Buie was among four players released by the Bucs on Saturday after the team's third preseason game.
Buie was trying to make the team as an undrafted rookie, and two other former Bulls -- offensive linemen Marc Dile and Ryan Schmidt -- remain on the roster trying to earn one of the final 53 spots, or a job on the team's practice squad.
That leaves 12 former USF players in NFL camps, including eight who are facing potential cuts in the next week -- Dile and Schmidt with the Bucs, LB Craig Kobel and WR Huey Whittaker with the Jets, CB Trae Williams with the Eagles, RB Chad Simpson with the Colts, WR Taurus Johnson with the Chiefs and RB Andre Hall with the Texans.
-- Times correspondent Kerry Klecic checks in from Saturday's practice, the last one before the Bulls begin regular game-week preparation for next week's opener against I-AA Wofford. Here are his notes:
TAMPA — USF junior running back Mike Ford, who was suspended for the first two games because he violated team rules, is working on the Bulls’ scout team offense, wearing different numbers to represent Wofford running backs.
Ford has worn the No. 7, which is Wofford fullback Eric Breitenstein, and running backs coach Carl Franks said he’s working with four others in the scout team running back rotation.
“(Ford) and I had a conversation about what he was going to need to do to help the team and part of that is helping with the scout team … It’s important that he works hard and people see him doing that, so when he comes back people know he’s been doing the right things,” he said.
The Terriers return junior Mike Rucker, who started eight games last season. Franks said Ford, freshmen Demetris Murray and Bradley Battles, Indian Rocks Christian walk-on Jonny Sitton and sophomore Wharton grad Joel Miller, who he referred to as “fantastic on scout work,” are in the rotation.
Call it crazy: As of Saturday afternoon, USF had 20 calls in response to a release sent out Friday saying any kickers who were interested in trying out could call special teams coach John Hendrick.
However, coach Jim Leavitt reaffirmed Saturday that senior Delbert Alvarado would handle kickoff duties “with no hesitation.” The Bulls, who practiced for about one hour and 15 minutes, spent a majority of Saturday’s session on special teams and kicking.
New names: Sitton is one of three walk-ons to join the team this week -- USF expands its football roster from 105 players to 110 once school starts. The other two are defensive back Lonnie Oxendine, who has been with the team in each of the last two springs, and freshman linebacker Matt Milk from Naples Gulf Coast.