Wednesday, April 25, 2018
USF Bulls

USF spring preview: Who replaces Auggie Sanchez?

All week, we're examining the most interesting position battles entering USF's spring practice, which begins Monday.

Today: middle linebacker (On deck: running back)

2017 starter: Auggie Sanchez
The consummate over-achiever, Sanchez exited the program as the school's career tackles leader (388). Despite his limitations (in terms of agility and fleetness), he may rank among the Bulls' career leaders in grit. The de facto quarterback of the defense the last three seasons, Sanchez's value in terms of leadership and locker-room presence can't be quantified.

2018 starter: At his signing day press conference a few weeks back, Coach Charlie Strong essentially challenged senior Jimmy Bayes, technically listed as Sanchez's backup last season. Once a four-star recruit (per Rivals.com) from Immokalee, Bayes recorded all of his nine career tackles in 2017. "You won't find a better-looking player than Jimmy Bayes," Strong said. "But Jimmy's got to step up now that we've lost some guys." We don't know if redshirt sophomore Andre Polk Jr. is fully recovered from last season's knee injury (perhaps we'll find out Monday), but this onetime four-star prospect (per 247Sports) presumably will be in the mix if healthy. Also expect sophomore Keirston Johnson — a former three-star guy presumably beefier after a year in the program — to get a serious look. "Once we get into spring practice there's gonna be some guys that we move around," Strong said. That opens the door for some real experimentation. Last season against UCF, Strong slid safeties Khalid McGee and Devin Abraham in the box in dime packages, and it neutralized the Knights for a time. Could we see OLB Nico Sawtelle move to the middle, allowing Strong to employ McGee or another outside 'backer? Lots to sort out here.

Comments
USF extends Mark Harlan’s contract

USF extends Mark Harlan’s contract

As expected, USF athletic director Mark Harlan has signed a contract extension that will keep him at the school through the 2020-21 school year.Harlan recently entered the final year of the original five-year deal he signed in March 2014 that paid hi...
Published: 04/24/18
USF men win fourth consecutive AAC golf title

USF men win fourth consecutive AAC golf title

Only 445 yards separated USF's resident runner-up from the 2018 breakthrough he coveted.Two or three more swings, and Bulls senior Claudio Correa's first individual title of the season would be in the bag, right where his team's conference title alre...
Published: 04/24/18
Projecting where USF’s prospects will get drafted

Projecting where USF’s prospects will get drafted

For all the analyses and hypotheses, all the Mels and McShays, all the pro days and private workouts, the NFL draft remains a crap shoot at its core.But just for kicks, we're rolling the dice anyway.As a prelude to what could — could — be...
Published: 04/23/18
USF baseball cracks top 25

USF baseball cracks top 25

For the first time this season, USF's baseball team has cracked the national rankings.The Bulls (26-14, 9-6), coming off series wins against UCF and No. 7 East Carolina, are No. 20 in the latest Baseball America weekly poll. USF, winner of five of it...
Published: 04/23/18
Baseball: Bulls edge Knights to even series

Baseball: Bulls edge Knights to even series

After a two-hour weather delay Saturday evening at USF, the remote local threat of lightning finally dissipated.The postseason intensity never did.For the second consecutive night, the UCF-USF baseball series delivered, this time with the Bulls (25-1...
Published: 04/22/18
USF great Charlie Bradley to lace them up for charity basketball game

USF great Charlie Bradley to lace them up for charity basketball game

TAMPA — In basketball, players utilize moves to help win the game.Why not apply those same skills to help youth win at life?That’s the goal John "Coach J" Johnson had in mind when he created "Charlie Bradley’s Roundball Classic," which takes place on...
Published: 04/21/18
Updated: 04/24/18
Bay area has ‘hit show’ again, thanks to USF

Bay area has ‘hit show’ again, thanks to USF

For the first time since its season commenced, the USF baseball team enters a weekend as the Bulls' feature sports attraction.Basketball ended last month, and spring football ended last Saturday, meaning would-be baseball fans no longer have reason t...
Published: 04/19/18
Could Bruce Hector be the sleeper of USF’s draft class?

Could Bruce Hector be the sleeper of USF’s draft class?

TAMPA — His collection of skills seems to ooze NFL draft jargon: hip swivel, burst, agility, leverage, active hands.Over the past three or four months, most — or all — of these attributes have been affixed to USF defensive line...
Published: 04/19/18
ESPN’s Todd McShay: Quinton Flowers may be suited for developmental league

ESPN’s Todd McShay: Quinton Flowers may be suited for developmental league

ESPN's Todd McShay, who will cover his 10th NFL draft this weekend, participated in a national media conference call Wednesday, during which we managed to shoehorn a question about USF's Quinton Flowers.Specifically, we asked McShay if he believes Fl...
Published: 04/18/18
Concussions force USF lineman Grant Polk to give up football

Concussions force USF lineman Grant Polk to give up football

USF junior OL Grant Polk has left the team after suffering his second concussion in less than a calendar year, his father said Tuesday evening.A Virginia transfer who appeared in three games last season, Polk sustained his first concussion the first ...
Published: 04/17/18
Updated: 04/18/18