Robinson gone; Bulls hopeful on Huners
Defensive lineman Tavarious Robinson, in academic limbo for the past year, will not return to play for USF, but the Bulls are hopeful that offensive lineman Matt Huners will be able to return from knee surgery in time to play this season.
Huners, who tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during Saturday's spring game, will undergo reconstructive surgery early next month, but coach Jim Leavitt said he has not discussed the possibility of a medical redshirt and is optimistic that Huners could return in about four months for USF's opener against Elon in September. Huners, a junior from Palm Harbor, is projected as a starting guard but could also compete at tackle as well.
Robinson had 20 tackles in 2005 but redshirted last season as he worked to correct some academic problems. He was not listed on Saturday's spring game rosters, and Leavitt said he does not expect him to play this fall. He will, however, stay in school and finish classes to earn a degree, much like fellow defensive lineman Saiosi Uhatafe, who also will not play his final season.
Another quick football note -- USF is reconfiguring its recruiting territories after Leavitt added four new assistants this spring. Offensive coordinator Greg Gregory, who was successful in recruiting the Panhandle area last season, will now handle St. Petersburg, as Leavitt doesn't like his coordinators to travel as far away from Tampa during the season. Of the new coaches, Mike Simmonds will recruit Orlando, Larry Scott Miami, Mike Canales the Panhandle and southern Georgia, and Dan McCarney will take Fort Lauderdale and New Jersey.
Carl Franks will handle the Naples/Fort Myers area, Rich Rachel will take the south end of Miami and Homestead area, Troy Douglas will continue to work his native Jacksonville and down through Gainesville and Ocala and defensive coordinator Wally Burnham will work the middle of the state.
Leavitt said Wednesday that it's not definite whichof the new spring walk-ons will stick for the fall roster, but several will continue to train with the team this summer, led by defensive back Micah Morgan (the Missouri State transfer), former Countryside and N.C. State linebacker Lucas Darr, and running back Marquise Pease, who saw carries during Saturday's game.
One local who could join the Bulls as a preferred walk-on is Countryside kicker Josh Martinez, the son for former major-leaguer Dave Martinez, who is working as an assistant coach with the Rays. Martinez went 12-for-17 on field goals last season (including a 56- and 53-yarder in the same game) and a perfect 30-for-30 on extra points. He will take visits this spring to Memphis (home of Rick Kravitz) and Florida Atlantic to consider walk-on offers there before making a decision. He'd likely redshirt if he chose the Bulls, who will enter preseason drills with Delbert Alvarado as their kicker.
Check back later for an update on USF's recruitment of Miramar basketball standout Orane Chin ...