Notes: New hire for USF football academics
I've got my calendar all wrong. USF's annual "SuperBull" recruiting event isn't until next weekend. I'd been talking to someone about likely not being able to attend because of a family conflict, and here I am visiting family this weekend and I get my dates crossed.
So sorry for anyone I've confused in the last few hours. We'll have more in the next week on SuperBull, which brings a slew of top recruits to USF and Raymond James Stadium. The event got off to a huge start last year, netting six commitments toward the Bulls' recruiting class.
-- USF coach Jim Leavitt is very excited about the hiring of Jason Linders as assistant athletic director for football student-athlete development. That's the academic post for football, and Leavitt and associate AD Amy Haworth announced Linders' hiring late Friday.
Linders has spent the past three years at UNLV, where he's had a major impact on the team's academics, raising the team GPA from 2.50 to 2.77. USF's APR scores will get a solid bump this coming year just because the high-turnover 2004-05 season will be off the books.
Leavitt heard about Linders from UNLV offensive coordinator Todd Berry, who used to be head coach at Army and raved about the job Linders had done with the Rebels. Linders has a football background himself, with eight years as an assistant at small colleges like Southern Utah and Montana State.
-- The Times' Joe Smith had a note in Saturday's Times on Leavitt meeting with Rays players before Friday's home game, along with his 13-year-old daughter, Deandra. Fun to see Leavitt Tweeting about his trip to the Trop as well. "I cant believe how much hotdogs and icecream costs," he wrote.