Make us your home page
Instagram

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 begin Big East play against Syracuse this week

A special teams wrinkle helps Quenton Washington block a punt against FAU. Armando Sanchez recovered, the second time this year USF scored on a blocked punt to tie a 2001 team record.

WILLIE J. ALLEN JR. | Times

A special teams wrinkle helps Quenton Washington block a punt against FAU. Armando Sanchez recovered, the second time this year USF scored on a blocked punt to tie a 2001 team record.

TAMPA — If there's a time for coach Skip Holtz to pull double duty trying to rebuild USF's program while making a run at a Big East championship, it may be this season.

The Big East hasn't lived up to expectations in nonconference play, going 2-10 against BCS conference opponents and falling in seven attempts against ranked teams. As the Bulls — whose wins have been at home against I-AA Stony Brook, Western Kentucky and Florida Atlantic (combined records of 2-12) — prepare for their conference opener against Syracuse on Saturday, Holtz said he's interested to see how his team will stack up.

"I don't think (nonconference losses) have been restricted to the Big East. … We've lost some close games as a league," he said after Sunday's practice. "I don't think it looks very good for the league when you look at the win-loss records and that some of the teams we've lost to were non-BCS opponents.

"But I think we'll learn a lot about this league as we continue to go through it. I'm anxious to kind of see where this league is. I haven't lined up and played against Pittsburgh and Connecticut and Cincinnati and a lot of these teams, so I'm not only excited to see where we match up, but how the whole league plays out."

RB, WR expected to play: Holtz sat sophomore RB Demetris Murray and sophomore WR Sterling Griffin on Saturday against FAU as a precaution because their ankles hadn't healed. Holtz expects both to play against Syracuse.

Junior S Jerrell Young is the main injury concern. Young, who did not practice Sunday, limped off the field after an ankle injury in the first half against FAU and did not return. Holtz said more will be known about his status later in the week.

Wrinkle led to block, record: Holtz said the Bulls used a new look on special teams that helped junior Quenton Washington come off the edge against FAU and get USF's second punt block returned for a touchdown this season — matching the school record set in 2001.

"We felt like we could get it," he said, praising special teams coach Vernon Hargreaves. "We felt like we could turn and get it off the edge, so we put together a little scheme for it."

In the season opener, walk-on Chris Lane blocked a punt and recovered in the end zone.

USF Bulls begin Big East play against Syracuse this week 10/03/10 [Last modified: Monday, October 4, 2010 6:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays morning after: Why Alex Cobb was out of the game and Alex Colome was in

    Blogs

    Alex Cobb obviously did a really good job pitching the first eight innings for the Rays on Tuesday.

  2. Florida beats LSU, wins first College World Series title

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — Maybe this wasn't Florida coach Kevin O'Sullivan's best team. It is, however, his first national championship team.

    UF’s Nelson Maldonado, left, and Deacon Liput high-five after a run scores.
  3. As NCAA investigation continues, Baylor dances around sex-assault scandal

    College

    In 1996, Southern Baptist-affiliated Baylor University lifted its 151-year-old ban and allowed dancing on its Waco, Texas campus.

  4. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up

    Blogs

    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  5. Rays journal: Alex Cobb brilliant, Alex Colome worrying in 10-inning victory (w/video)

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — RHP Alex Cobb couldn't have been much better for the Rays on Tuesday, taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning while working eight solid. And Alex Colome couldn't have been much worse, blowing a two-run ninth-inning lead.

    Rays starter Alex Cobb carries a no-hitter into the seventh and pitches eight shutout innings in his best outing of the season.