Fan Fest: Storms arrive, QB announcement doesn't
A conclusion to USF's quarterback derby appears to be forthcoming.
Coach Willie Taggart said final decisions on many positions -- including QB -- could be made as soon as Sunday after he meets with assistants and reviews film from Saturday's second live scrimmage of the preseason.
"We want to go into next week being pretty sure on who we're gonna work with and who we're gonna continue to bring along with us," Taggart said.
From most indications, choosing between incumbent Mike White and junior Steven Bench will be an arduous task. Throughout the first two weeks of practice, the two traded snaps with the first-team offense and Taggart continually praised their competitiveness.
He reiterated that message after Saturday's session, which was closed to the public.
"I think all of our quarterbacks (played well)," Taggart said. "Mike looked good. Steven looked good throwing the ball."
FLOWERS BLOSSOMS: Freshman QB Quinton Flowers drew high praise from Taggart and teammates for his performance in the scrimmage. The four-star recruit from Miami threw three TDs while working with first-, second- and third-stringers, Taggart said.
"He ran the ball real well and he took control of the offense well too," senior WR Andre Davis said.
Taggart said Flowers' progression over the last few days has been fun to watch.
"Early on, there was a lot going in on him and he struggled a little bit," Taggart said. "But he kept his poise, he kept working and he's starting to make some plays for us."
NO DAMPENED SPIRITS: Inclement weather forced USF to move its annual Fan Fest from Corbett Stadium to the Sun Dome, but the day's festivities were hardly a wash.
A video of the event can be seen here. About 1,800 fans attended, mingling for autograph and photo opportunities with athletes and coaches from all fall sports, and shopping for discounted USF jerseys, helmets, shirts and shoes.
"It was fun. It was good to have our fans stick around to be a part of this," Taggart said. "We even had fans that were standing out in the rain to stay here just to meet the coaches and the players. I was taking pictures with guys (who were) soaking wet. It just goes to show their appreciation and their passion for USF."
ODDS AND ENDS: Sophomore DB Lamar Robbins had an interception in the scrimmage. ... What is Taggart's most pleasant surprise from training camp? The freshmen. "It's not often you get freshmen coming in here and being really physical," he said. ... Former QB Matt Grothe was at Fan Fest and signed autographs. ... Taggart said defensive line coach Eric Mathies has lost 90 pounds and defensive coordinator Chuck Bresnahan is down about 50 pounds from last season.
AUDIBLE: "We don't talk about redshirting around here. Other than that (red no-contact) jersey he has on in practice, we don't talk about that. ... We just let them compete and let them decide that." -- Taggart on whether he will redshirt Flowers.