Expect Strong's staff to be loaded with Longhorns
Among the figures that leaped off new USF coach Charlie Strong's five-year contract, arguably the most glaring was the initially low salary pool for his assistants.
Which leads to one reasonable conclusion: Strong is set to bring a lot of his Longhorns assistants to Tampa with him.
Strong's staff salary pool for 2017 is only $1.66 million, noticeably lower than the 2016 pools of the American Athletic Conference's other public universities, according to a USA Today salary database. UCF's 2016 pool, for instance, was $2.13 million, Houston's $2.42 million. (Pools for private schools weren't available).
The pool escalates to $2.25 million in Year 2 of Strong's deal, and $3.4 million in Years 3-5. So what can Bulls fans deduce? Like Strong, most of UT's assistants also probably received handsome buyouts and essentially can work at USF on the Longhorns' dime for now.
Among the most likely to arrive with Strong: strength and conditioning coach Pat Moorer (a former University of Florida linebacker) and linebackers coach/recruiting coordinator Brian Jean-Mary, an Apopka native.
Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Sterlin Gilbert also is believed to be a solid candidate to relocate with Strong. Another name bandied about is Chicago Bears outside linebackers coach Clint Hurtt, though USF administrators might have something to say about that.
Hurtt is credited with helping Strong land a bushel of Florida talent during their tenure at Louisville, but previously served a two-year show-cause penalty stemming from NCAA sanctions against Hurtt while at the University of Miami during the Nevin Shapiro scandal.
That show-cause period has expired.