So much stuff, I'm splitting things up
I'll have some recruiting news up within the hour, but wanted to get some other notes out on a post of their own, just so things don't get lost in the shuffle. I'll try to get a minor-league baseball update out in the next day or two as well. Got the official preseason practice schedule from USF today -- only six days of two-a-days in 20 days of drills leading up to the first game week. To confirm an official time, Fan Appreciation Day is set for Aug. 25 at 11 a.m. ...
-- I'm tempted to do a list of the top 10 lists I've read this week. You can't swing a dead cat online without hitting a list of some kind. ESPN.com actually has one I'm intrigued by, ranking the 119 Division I football programs from 119 to 1 in terms of the past decade. They rolled out the bottom 19 schools on Monday, with fledgling programs FAU (105th) and FIU (117th) checking in. Curious to see where USF fits in the rankings, considering the Bulls were a I-AA program for four of the last 10 years. Since I'm a cheap shill for blog comments ... guesses, anyone?
-- NFL training camps are opening now, so we have links on several USF alums trying to land jobs. The Denver Broncos' official site updates Andre Hall trying to stick there, and the Kansas City Star writes about how young players such as Ean Randolph could be a big part of the Chiefs' roster this fall. And that spring optimism that Stephen Nicholas could be starting in Atlanta has leveled off; the AJC's Steve Wyche reports that with the signing of veteran Orlando Huff last month, Nicholas is now battling him for the backup weakside job there. Again, the only knock against Nicholas is his relative inexperience.
-- Really interesting story in the Orlando Sentinel today, comparing the announced attendance for Orlando teams with the actual turnstile count. Check out the UCF data in the chart the Sentinel ran -- the difference between actual and announced was never more than 15 percent from 2002 to 2004, then went to 19.6 percent in 2005 and an impressive 43.2 percent last season.
-- A few links I don't want to forget: Here's a longer story from the Times' Joe Smith that ran in Pinellas on John Gerdes taking the St. Pete Catholic job, complete with a Doug Woolard quote. And from my colleague Brian Landman, a good story on former USF stars Andre Hall and Thed Watson giving back to their community in St. Petersburg. And because Brian deserves more traffic, we're throwing some linkage to his FSU blog. Being fair, we'll throw Antonya English's Gators blog a link since she hasn't had a national championship in months. We're just trying to boost our college numbers in the ever-competitive Times blog traffic rankings. Solidarity, people!