USF got a head start on its 2005 recruiting class Wednesday, announcing two midyear additions in offensive lineman Danny Muy, a transfer from Nebraska, and tight end Cedric Hill, who signed with Miami last spring.
Muy, a 6-foot-2, 270-pound center/guard from Tallahassee's Lincoln High, redshirted last fall as a freshman at Nebraska. He's transferring to be closer to his mother Marta, who is battling breast cancer, and because of that family illness USF is expected to petition the NCAA for a hardship waiver that would allow him to avoid sitting out a year as most Division I transfers must do. As a high school senior, he was rated the nation's No. 9 center prospect by recruiting Web site Rivals.com.
Hill, a 6-foot-3, 210-pounder from Valdosta, Ga., signed with Miami in February but was not admitted because he did not have the test scores the school required. He had agreed to defer his enrollment at Miami until this semester, but the Hurricanes withdrew their scholarship offer last week, according to Valdosta coach Rick Darlington.
Hill, a high school teammate of USF freshman cornerback Carlton Williams, was released from his letter of intent and is fully eligible and, like Muy, a full-time student at USF. At Valdosta, Hill had four sacks as a part-time defensive end. He also caught 24 passes for 574 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior, and in the 2003 state semifinals in the Georgia Dome, he caught touchdown passes of 76 and 67 yards.
Muy and Hill will count toward the NCAA maximum 25 scholarships allowed by signing day next month, as does Armwood's Jarriett Buie.
Despite a newspaper report to the contrary, former Bulls star Brian Fisher has not enrolled in classes at USF for the spring semester, according to the university registrar's office.
Fisher, who attended Hillsborough Community College last fall, is hoping to return to the football team after multiple arrests relating to nonpayment of child support last year. An Escambia County judge has cleared Fisher of more than $19,000 owed to two Pensacola women because his child-support papers were not served properly. Coach Jim Leavitt declined to comment on Fisher or his future at USF.
UF assistant joins Zook
Florida recruiting coordinator and running backs coach Mike Locksley accepted a job as offensive coordinator at Illinois, reuniting him with former UF coach Ron Zook.
Locksley will step into the position left vacant when former Florida assistant Larry Fedora made an unexpected shift from Illinois to Oklahoma State last week.
Locksley worked under Zook for two seasons after six years at Maryland. He was credited with much of Florida's recruiting success the past two seasons, including last year's seventh-rated class. He was retained on the UF staff when newcoach Urban Meyer was hired. The 35-year-old has been an assistant coach for nine seasons, but this will be his first coordinator's job.
"This is a tremendous hire for our staff," Zook said. "I am incredibly excited that Mike will be joining me at Illinois. I can say undoubtedly that he is one of the rising stars in this business. He was next in line for the coordinator position at Florida and is exactly where Larry Fedora was in his career when I brought him on in 2003."
ALABAMA: Quarterback Spencer Pennington is leaving the team to focus on baseball. Pennington, the No. 3 quarterback to open the season, started the final seven games after starter Brodie Croyle and backup Marc Guillon were injured.
AUBURN: Offensive tackle Marcus McNeill and receiver Anthony Mix said they will return for their senior seasons after both considered a jump to the NFL.
Times staff writer Antonya English contributed to this report, which used information from Times wires.