Sunday, December 17, 2017
Colleges

USF confident in freshman LB Harris

TAMPA — With starting LB Reshard Cliett doubtful for Saturday's home game against Florida Atlantic, USF coach Willie Taggart said he's confident in Nigel Harris if the true freshman's pressed into a major role.

"When the guy has consistently shown he can take what you teach him in the meeting room and take it on the football field and help you execute, then the kid has a chance to play," Taggart said. "Nigel has shown us he can do the things we ask him to do. He's played in some ball games now, so he sees what it's like to play at this level. He's not the biggest, as of yet, but he's a tough kid."

Harris, 6 feet and 190 pounds, shined at Hillsborough High, and showed enough in August that coaches made him the No. 2 weakside linebacker, ahead of many more experienced players.

THIS AND THAT: Taggart said he'll stick with Kenneth Durden as his punt returner, despite the redshirt sophomore fielding two punts inside USF's 10-yard line already this season. "We worked really, really hard on making great decisions back there, and I think Kenneth will do a great job for us," Taggart said. … The team added eight walk-ons, including former Tarpon Springs K Michael Hill. He sat out last season after transferring from Oklahoma, where he spent 2011 as a walk-on.

FSU: No-huddle awaits

TALLAHASSEE — FSU is preparing for the offensive challenges presented by Nevada.

Coach Jimbo Fisher focused on Nevada's no-huddle offense, emphasizing the importance of forcing third down, then getting a stop.

"Against a no-huddle team, that's the down,'' Fisher said. "You get a third down and you get off the field, you can win some battles because it's hard for those no-huddle teams to get into a rhythm. Third down is critical in any ball game, especially against a team like this."

At Thursday's practice the Seminoles stayed out in the heat to get used to the intensity needed against the no-huddle. Fisher said it will be important to keep fresh defenders in the game.

Times wires

UCF: Getting physical

Penn State players expect a physical game against UCF.

"UCF is going to be a tough matchup for us," RB Bill Belton said. "They look like they have a tough defense, they're big. It's going to be a physical matchup, so we're preparing for that."

Added OL Miles Dieffenbach: "They have some really big defensive tackles, quick ends and they're strong at linebacker with a good secondary. It's going to be a physical game … something we're really looking forward to."

Orlando Sentinel

Comments
No. 22 Gators, No. 19 Seminoles fall in Orange Bowl Classic games

No. 22 Gators, No. 19 Seminoles fall in Orange Bowl Classic games

SUNRISE — Marcquise Reed threw a 75-foot pass to Elijah Thomas for a dunk that put Clemson ahead to stay with 37 seconds left, and the Tigers rallied from a 12-point deficit in the second half Saturday to beat No. 22 Florida 71-69 in the Orange Bowl ...
Published: 12/16/17

Tim Tebow wants to help throw you a tailgate wedding (sausages included)

Tim Tebow loves weddings.He apparently also loves football, tailgate parties and a good brat, which might explain why he’s lending his pitchman talents to a contest that ties all four together.In a promotional video, Tebow asks, "What happens when yo...
Published: 12/14/17
River Ridge grad Chris Schwarz on brink of Division II title with West Florida

River Ridge grad Chris Schwarz on brink of Division II title with West Florida

Two years ago, Chris Schwarz was mulling over his college choices. The former River Ridge High standout had offers from Valparaiso, Florida Tech and West Florida. West Florida?That one baffled Schwarz, mostly because he knew nothing about the school....
Published: 12/14/17
Gators crash volleyball power party, play national semifinal Thursday

Gators crash volleyball power party, play national semifinal Thursday

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — It’s difficult to call a volleyball program that has been to the Final Four eight times an underdog, especially the way Florida rallied to beat Southern California and punch its latest ticket. Yet of the four schools descending on ...
Published: 12/13/17
FSU beats Tulane in Tampa, stays unbeaten in basketball

FSU beats Tulane in Tampa, stays unbeaten in basketball

Published: 12/10/17
Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield wins Heisman Trophy

Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield wins Heisman Trophy

NEW YORK — Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield won the Heisman Trophy on Saturday night, completing a climb from walk-on to one of the most accomplished players in the history of college football. Mayfield won a lopsided vote to become the sixth Okla...
Published: 12/09/17
Could Jim Harbaugh soon be known as Willie Taggart’s buddy?

Could Jim Harbaugh soon be known as Willie Taggart’s buddy?

TAMPA — His team was in Ann Arbor, practicing. He was signing footballs in Tampa.Yet another Jim Harbaugh fun fact."I can’t be in two places at once," Harbaugh said.Not that Harbaugh wouldn’t try it if he could. College football’s firestarter, its bi...
Published: 12/08/17

Gasparilla Bowl journal: Temple’s Collins speaks highly of former boss, new Gator Mullen

ST. PETE BEACH — If anyone has an accurate read on how new coach Dan Mullen will fare at Florida, it’s Temple’s Geoff Collins.Collins worked under Mullen as a Mississippi State assistant from 2011-14. He jumped from there to Gainesville, where he spe...
Published: 12/07/17
No. 5 Florida Gators lose stunner at home to Loyola-Chicago

No. 5 Florida Gators lose stunner at home to Loyola-Chicago

GAINESVILLE — Aundre Jackson scored 23, Cameron Krutwig added 14 and Loyola-Chicago stunned No. 5 Florida 63-59 Wednesday, handing the Gators a third consecutive loss. Less than 48 hours after Florida coach Mike White said his team’s performance agai...
Published: 12/06/17
Twitter propels man toward dream of becoming bloomin' onion at Outback Bowl

Twitter propels man toward dream of becoming bloomin' onion at Outback Bowl

No matter what happens on the field at the Outback Bowl in Tampa, the star of the show will be the bloomin’ onion. Not the deliciously crispy, glistening, 1,900-plus-calorie appetizer served at Outback restaurants, but the person who parades t...
Published: 12/06/17