Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

USF Bulls lose to Rutgers Scarlet Knights 70-67

PISCATAWAY, N.J. — If USF's deflating start to the Big East schedule could at least be explained away prior to Thursday night, with losses to two top-10 teams, there was little consolation after a 70-67 loss at Rutgers that left the Bulls as the only winless team in the conference.

The Bulls (9-7, 0-4 Big East) gave away a halftime lead and despite a late flurry that was led by Jawanza Poland, they could not claw all the way back. Poland scored a game-high 17 — 15 in the second half.

USF trailed by three as it got the ball back with 11 seconds remaining and one timeout left. But after Poland fumbled the ball on the rebound, costing almost three seconds, coach Stan Heath decided not to call the final timeout because he saw an opportunity to capitalize with the Scarlet Knights defense not set.

But Martino Brock missed a long off-balance 3-pointer with about two seconds remaining, shooting rather than passing to an open Poland in the corner.

"That's why I held on to the timeout because Poland had a hot hand and I thought we were going to make one more pass,'' Heath said. "(Brock) had a great look, the ball went in and out, so I don't fault that shot.''

Trailing 30-27, Rutgers (12-4, 3-2) opened the second half with an 11-2 run. Seven points came in transition, with Myles Mack's layup on the break giving Rutgers a 38-32 advantage.

USF played catch-up the rest of the way.

This was the stretch that Heath credited with changing the game, saying the Bulls let their guard down.

The Bulls lost their ability to control the pace, as Rutgers turned up the tempo from what was a slog in the first half.

Point guard Anthony Collins directed the USF offense, with eight assists and one turnover. He scored 11, one of four Bulls in double digits. Victor Rudd scored 11 and JaVontae Hawkins had 10.

"I thought our team showed kind of a little who they are,'' Heath said. "We were 0-3 and we're on the road at Rutgers and some teams might have just showed up, but we didn't. We played. … We'll win games if we continue to play where we are right now and continue to work and get better."

USF Bulls lose to Rutgers Scarlet Knights 70-67 01/17/13 [Last modified: Friday, January 18, 2013 12:24am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning edges Red Wings on road

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — The digs were different, the Lightning seeing the masterfully-done new Little Caesar's Arena for the first time.

    Lightning center/Red Wings’ killer Tyler Johnson gets past defenseman Trevor Daley on his way to the first goal of the game.
  2. Armwood pulls away to defeat Plant 27-7, remain undefeated


    SEFFNER — First-year Armwood coach Evan Davis pulled out all the stops to get his team psyched for Monday's annual grudge match against Plant.

    Armwood defensive end Malcolm Lamar (97) gets fired up before the start of the game between Plant High School Panthers and the Armwood High School Hawks in Suffer, Fla. on Monday, Oct. 16, 2017.
  3. Bucs journal: Dirk Koetter says Vernon Hargreaves needs to improve


    TAMPA — The Bucs now rank 31st in the NFL in pass defense, allowing 301 yards per game in their 2-3 start, and coach Dirk Koetter was asked Monday how concerned he is with the play of second-year CB Vernon Hargreaves.

    Ryan Fitzpatrick, throwing an incompletion under pressure after replacing injured Jameis Winston against the Cardinals,  would start this Sunday in Buffalo if Winston’s shoulder is still bothering him.
  4. Backhand shot makes Nikita Kucherov's offense even more dangerous

    Lightning Strikes

    DETROIT — Nikita Kucherov is on a historic streak, just the fourth player in the past 30 years to score a goal in each of his first six games.

    Nikita Kucherov’s backhand shot adds to his strong scoring.
  5. Rick Pitino officially fired by Louisville amid federal corruption probe


    In an expected move, the University of Louisville Athletic Association's Board of Directors on Monday voted unanimously to fire men's basketball coach Rick Pitino. The decision came 19 days after Louisville acknowledged that its men's basketball program was being investigated as part of a federal corruption probe and …

    In this Oct. 20, 2016, file photo, Louisville head basketball coach Rick Pitino reacts to a question during a press conference in Louisville, Ky. Louisville's Athletic Association on Monday officially fired Pitino, nearly three weeks after the school acknowledged that its men's basketball program is being investigated as part of a federal corruption probe. [AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley, File]