USF baseball draft picks in final week of limbo
Only one week remains before the deadline for baseball draft picks to sign a pro contract, and USF still has several key players weighing their options between turning pro or playing for the Bulls this spring.
Two unsigned draft picks -- senior left-hander Andrew Barbosa and incoming freshman outfielder Ozney Guillen -- have said publicly they will play for the Bulls, while four others remain undecided. The biggest is senior pitcher Randy Fontanez, who has pitched well in the Cape Cod league and is choosing between the Reds and Bulls, with the same two options for freshman outfielder Kyle Waldrop of Fort Myers, who was Cincinnati's 12th-round pick.
Two more freshmen are making the same choice -- left-hander Nick Gonzalez said he expects a final offer from the Phillies on Saturday, while outfielder James Ramsay hasn't decided whether to sign with the Yankees or play for the Bulls.
USF coach Lelo Prado hasn't announced a new pitching coach yet to replace Lazer Collazo, and already has a new hitting coach on board in former Bulls star and major-leaguer Chris Heintz. The draft has already hit Prado hard, with juniors Stephen Hunt and Eric Sim signing pro deals, as well as signees Austin Knight and Kyle Ryan. The deadline to sign is at 11:59 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 16.
-- USF basketball signee Waverly Austin, who did not qualify academically, said Saturday he will play this season at Palm Beach State College. It's the same school (previously known as Palm Beach Community College) that former USF center B.J. Ajayi played at in 2006-07 before joining the Bulls. Austin will have two years at PBSO, with hopes of returning to USF for his final two years of college.