Tiny bit of hoops news, more football
Here's how close-to-the-vest Doug Woolard's keeping his search for a men's basketball search: we have our first published report of contact to request permission to speak to a coach under contract at another college. Sunday's Hartford Courant reports that USF has contacted Connecticut to request permission to interview associate head coach Tom Moore, an assistant under Jim Calhoun for 13 seasons.
Moore hasn't been a Division I head coach, though he was head coach for five seasons at Worcester State College in Massachusetts before going to the Huskies, and even the Courant's report says the Bulls will likely target someone with head coaching experience. If not, Moore's one of the best in the Big East, a 41-year-old coach with two national championship rings from one of the league's most successful programs. The national sites like ESPN.com and Sportsline.com have had sourced reports saying coaches are interested in the job, but I'm not sure how much weight to give the name-dropping there. Monday should be a more newsy day on the basketball front, with a workday opportunity to reach a lot of potential candidates. USF's window for the public posting of the job ends Tuesday, which raises the paranoia level clear up to "it could happen at any point" status.
More on that spring football roster, Jenny Craig style. Who are the biggest weight-gainers from the final 2006 roster to this spring's new numbers? I count seven players who gained 15 pounds or more, led by walk-on running back Shawn Cannon (up 20 to 200), redshirt freshman defensive end Brandon Peguese (up 20 to 240) and redshirt freshmen offensive linemen Jeff Ide and Jacob Sims, both up 20 to 280. These all make sense -- first off-season in the program, first chance to really bulk up in a college weight room. Three other players added 15 pounds -- senior defensive end Jarriett Buie (up 15 to 255), redshirt freshman linebacker LeBrandon Glover (up 15 to 230) and freshman center Kevin McCaskill (up 15 to 305). Players gaining 10 pounds on the roster? Linebackers Sam Miller (210) and Alonzo McQueen (230), defensive tackle Woody George (275), receiver Carlton Mitchell (200) and defensive end Josh Smiley (230). One notable player listed as losing weight is sophomore defensive end George Selvie, who has dropped 10 pounds to 245.
I'm all for any push for accuracy, so I'm happy to report that four Bulls managed to shrink in recent months, being listed an inch shorter than they used to be. Again, all four are finishing their first year on campus -- tight end Andrew Ketchel (who's now the top backup to Ced Hill), walk-on tight end Quincy Okolie, walk-on lineman Jacob Sims and K-State transfer Ryan Schmidt, listed as the man to beat at right guard. Sims managed to drop an inch and add 20 pounds -- I'm in danger of having a year like that, I fear.
One more depth chart note -- sophomore Chris Robinson is currently listed as the starting strongside linebacker, with transfer Tyrone McKenzie listed as his top backup. This might be the most closely contested -- and crucial -- position battles this spring, right up there with running back.
I'll be busy with basketball this week, but expect a full report from Tuesday's first practice, which is entirely open to the media, at least for now.