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's Aaron Lynch heads for 2014 NFL draft

Aaron Lynch confirmed he's ending his Bulls career after 12 games to enter the NFL draft.

OCTAVIO JONES | Times

Aaron Lynch confirmed he's ending his Bulls career after 12 games to enter the NFL draft.

TAMPA

On the frenetic meter, player movement in college football ranks only a notch below shopping-mall bustle this time of year.

Little surprise then, USF lost one defensive end and gained another in a one-hour span Tuesday.

Shortly after third-year sophomore Aaron Lynch confirmed he's ending his Bulls career after 12 games to enter the NFL draft, the Bulls received a commitment from heralded junior college DE Demetrius Hill. He's expected to sign as early as today and enroll in January.

The signature can't arrive soon enough. With Lynch's departure, the top four ends on USF's depth chart are gone. The other three — Julius Forte, Ryne Giddins and Tevin Mims — were seniors.

Lynch was the best of the lot by season's end. Thwarted early by double-teams and frustration, the rangy Notre Dame transfer (6 feet 6, 244 pounds) had four of his team-best six sacks in the final three games, earning first-team All-American Athletic Conference honors.

"We thank Aaron for his contributions to our program over the past two years and wish him all the best in his future," USF coach Willie Taggart said in a statement. "We look forward to Aaron representing USF well in the NFL."

Though Lynch's physical upside and athleticism should benefit him in a combine setting, his 2013 numbers virtually mirrored the ones he posted for the Fighting Irish — against a much stronger schedule — as a freshman All-American in 2011.

He has an exceptional burst, bull-rush skills and an NBA-style wingspan. Conversely, he seemed easily flustered at times and was in Taggart's doghouse at least once. Projections about where he'll be drafted are all over the place.

But while speculation varies about Lynch's short-term fate (see draft, mock), Hill's will be sealed when he fills out his paperwork.

Reared in northeastern Illinois, Hill (6-3, 245) totaled 61 tackles (15 for loss) and six sacks this past season at Fort Scott (Kansas) Community College. Deemed a three-star prospect by 247Sports, he reportedly also had strong interest from Minnesota and Northern Illinois.

One of two pure defensive end commits for the upcoming class, he's expected to enter spring drills among the Bulls' most experienced players at his spot. No other returning end on the roster had a tackle in 2013.

"I have a great relationship with Coach Taggart, and it's great knowing that my defensive line coach will be Coach (Eric) Mathies," Hill told Scout.com. "He understands me a lot because he's from Chicago, so we have that good relationship."

NO TAKING A KNEE: If USF's women's basketball team can rehab its offensive deficiencies as rapidly as Inga Orekhova rehabbed her knee, a second straight NCAA Tournament berth is in the bag.

Twelve days after surgery to repair a torn left meniscus, Orekhova started in Saturday's 75-56 loss at Oklahoma State, collecting 13 points and six rebounds in 34 minutes. Initially, the 6-2 senior point guard was expected to miss at least four weeks.

"A little bit (surprising)," she said Monday, "because I remember my first year here, I had a scope on the same (knee) and it took me like, two or three weeks. Now, I don't have time to sit out that long."

A preseason second-team All-American Athletic Conference pick, Orekhova was walking almost immediately after her surgery and did bike work the next day, coach Jose Fernandez said. Swelling is minimal, though she heavily ices the knee after each workout.

LATTIMORE THE MVP: Senior LB DeDe Lattimore, who ended his career as the Bulls' No. 2 tackler (337), was presented the John and Cynthia Ruzic Team MVP award at the team's postseason banquet Sunday night.

Junior WR Andre Davis (49 catches, 735 receiving yards) was named offensive MVP, while DE Mims (40 tackles) earned the defensive honor. Groza Award finalist Marvin Kloss was special teams MVP.

USF's Aaron Lynch heads for 2014 NFL draft 12/17/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 17, 2013 8:56pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. College World Series: Gators, LSU face off in all-SEC finals

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — The matchup for the College World Series finals bolsters the case for those who say the best baseball in the land is played in the SEC.

    Florida’s Brady Singer, delivering during a CWS win over Louisville last week, is scheduled to start tonight against LSU.
  2. Jones: Fox Sports Sun shows depth in Rays coverage

    TV and Radio

    tom jones' two cents

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Who needs the NBA draft board? Certainly not the Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
  3. Brian Boyle says returning to Lightning a 'huge option'

    Blogs

    As former Lightning forward Brian Boyle approaches free agency this week, he said he's trying to stay busy.

  4. Rays journal: Blake Snell to rejoin rotation, Erasmo Ramirez heads to bullpen

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — LHP Blake Snell is rejoining the Rays' rotation, but the move has as much to do with helping the bullpen as it does with Snell's improvement during his time at Triple-A Durham.

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Erasmo Ramirez (30) delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.
  5. Rays' bullpen stars lit up in loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday it was the soft underbelly of the bullpen that let one get away from the Rays, incurring the wrath of the team's faithful followers, who wondered why the high-leverage guys weren't pitching.

    Rays closer Alex Colome, coming in with the score tied in the ninth, allows three runs in his second straight poor outing.