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Notes: Fullback Kelly enjoying new role



Here are Tuesday's practice notes from Times correspondent Kerry Klecic ...


TAMPA -- Senior Richard Kelly has seen a lot change since he came to USF in 2007.

The 6-foot-2, 242-pound fullback has been through three offensive coordinators in four seasons. And though he's played a team-high 40 career games in a Bulls uniform, he always had to fight to stay involved in offenses that preferred a spread-type passing offense.

But that's not the case this year under new offensive coordinator Todd Fitch.

USF only has 70 pass attempts in three games. Only seven schools in the country have fewer. And with the team ranked 22nd in the country in rushing yards per game and up against the nation's worst rushing defense in Florida Atlantic on Saturday, Kelly, who had his second career rushing touchdown Saturday against Western Kentucky, said he looks forward to continue contributing more.

"We can really run the ball out of the power-I just like I did in high school," he said. "Now that we're back to the power-I, it's like my offense ... It feels great for me because it's my senior year."

Kelly has four rushing attempts this season, and that already has doubled his total from 13 games last season. And coach Skip Holtz said Tuesday that Kelly's blocking ability has been a big reason why the Bulls have had success on the ground.

"The wheels on the bus couldn't go around without him leading the way ... He's waited a long time for his role," he said.

-- Holtz said sophomore kicker Maikon Bonani, who replaced senior walk-on Eric Schwartz late in Saturday's game after he went 0-for-2, has a hip strain. Bonani, who came in and made a 33-yard field goal, will be held back in practice, and Holtz will make a decision later in the week.

This and that: Sophomore RB Demetris Murray, who has emerged as the Bulls' leading rusher, was held out of practice Tuesday because of an ankle injury on the first play of Saturday's game. Murray, however, is expected to practice Wednesday. ... Holtz also expects senior WR Dontavia Bogan, who missed Saturday's game with an ankle injury, to play against Florida Atlantic, and he hinted that WR Sterling Griffin, out since preseason with a dislocated ankle, could also return.

[Last modified: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 9:40pm]


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