USF tight ends coach expected to call plays in bowl game

Justin Burke has served on Charlie Strong's coaching staffs since 2011
USF tight ends coach Justin Burke (left) is expected to call offensive plays for USF coach Charlie Strong (right) in next week's Gasparilla Bowl. [CHRIS URSO | Times]
USF tight ends coach Justin Burke (left) is expected to call offensive plays for USF coach Charlie Strong (right) in next week's Gasparilla Bowl. [CHRIS URSO | Times]
Published December 11 2018

Though no official announcement has been made, USF tight ends/special teams coach Justin Burke is expected to call offensive plays when the Bulls face Marshall in next week's Gasparilla Bowl.

Various sources indicated Burke, who has served on Charlie Strong's staff at all three of his coaching stops, has been calling plays since USF began bowl practices Saturday. A USF fan website, The Daily Stampede, also reported Burke is expected to run the offense in the bowl game.

Speculation has abounded about who would call plays on a temporary basis since former Bulls offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert formally was introduced as coach at McNeese State on Friday.

A former backup quarterback at Louisville who started three games in 2009, Burke, 31, arrived with Strong from Texas, where he was a quality-control assistant. On his watch, fourth-year junior TE Mitch Wilcox has evolved into arguably USF's steadiest offensive force (40 catches, 506 yards in '18).

His special-teams units, meantime, have solidified this fall. Though it has struggled in kickoff coverage, USF has surrendered neither a blocked kick nor punt after allowing five in 2017.

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