TAMPA — It's an indication of USF's depth and young talent on offense, but senior RB Lindsey Lamar, two seasons removed from being Big East special teams player of the year, agreed to redshirt this year and will save his final season for 2013.
"Having four running backs with Lindsey not in the mix…," coach Skip Holtz said. "I think Lindsey is a weapon, he's fast, he can run. A little bit rusty right now at running back. He hadn't played there in two years. I don't think he's an every-down back back there yet. I think he can truly benefit from a redshirt year. … He would rather do that, which I totally respect."
Lamar, a Hillsborough High grad, has been USF's primary kick returner the past two seasons, with two touchdowns on returns in 2010. But the Bulls opted to use starting CB Kayvon Webster instead, and he had 53 yards on three returns plus a long return negated by a holding penalty Saturday against Chattanooga.
Lamar was listed as the No. 2 back entering fall camp. The emergence of junior Marcus Shaw moved him down, and Holtz is content to go with starter Demetris Murray and backups Willie Davis and Bradley Battles. The Bulls didn't run well Saturday: 85 yards on 31 carries.
As many as five non-freshmen on offense might redshirt, with Lamar perhaps joined by junior QB Bobby Eveld, sophomore WR Ruben Gonzalez, sophomore TE Tye Turner and junior RB Mike Pierre.
POINT TAKEN: With his third extra point in the first half, senior Maikon Bonani became USF's career scoring leader, giving him 247 points, one more than K Santiago Gramatica (2001-04). Bonani owns Bulls records for career field goals (51) and field-goal accuracy (75.0 percent) and could get the PAT record this year — he entered 41 behind Gramatica, who finished with 132.
YOUNG UP FRONT: USF's starting offensive line included three players in their first college start: LT Damien Edwards, C Austin Reiter and RT Max Lang. Both tackles were pressed into duty by injuries to projected starters.— Quinterrius Eatmon, who'd missed time with a concussion, rotated with Lang in the first half, and Darrell Williams, limited by an ankle injury midweek, did not play in the first half.
BEST FOOT FORWARD: P Justin Brockhaus-Kann averaged a net 50 yards on two punts, both setting up Chattanooga inside its 10-yard line. Sophomore Marvin Kloss, a walk-on placed on scholarship this week, sent all five of his kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks.
THIS AND THAT: USF substituted extensively on the defensive line, but didn't go to the bench at linebacker or defensive back until late in the third quarter, except to use former walk-on Ernie Tabuteau for the nickel package. … Among those making their USF debut was FB Spencer Cavalieri, a Gaither grad placed on scholarship last week. Sophomore DT Todd Chandler, in his first game, had five tackles, including a team-best three for loss.