USF senior QB Quinton Flowers said he had no offensive or lewd intentions with a post-touchdown gesture during the Bulls' loss Friday to UCF that later gained national traction.
TV cameras caught Flowers making the gesture toward UCF's student section following his 24-yard touchdown run in the third quarter of the Knights' 49-42 triumph against the Bulls.
"It was in no way my intention to do anything offensive in Friday night's tremendous game between two great teams and universities," Flowers said in a statement released Saturday by USF.
"I apologize if anything I did was interpreted the wrong way. I have always tried my best to be a good representative of USF and a positive example to young people."
The footage was picked up by some national outlets including Sporting News and SB Nation. At least two prominent national college football writers — Bleacher Report's Matt Hayes and CBS Sports' Dennis Dodd– alluded to it on Twitter.
Spectrum Sports' Chris Torello noted in a tweet Saturday that Flowers was being insulted by UCF students.
"I know who this young man is," Bulls coach Charlie Strong said in the statement. "I know his character and I don't believe he intended to do anything that would offend anyone."
The incident comes only six days after Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield made a crotch-grabbing gesture and appeared to yell profanities at Kansas' players during the Sooners' 41-3 rout of the Jayhawks. Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley stripped Mayfield of his team-captain status and announced he wouldn't start today's game against West Virginia.
"All is forgiven Baker," Dodd tweeted in response to Hayes. "Flowers' gesture twice as bad as Mayfield and done to the crowd."
Flowers threw for a USF single-game record 503 yards, and broke his own school single-game mark with 605 total yards, in the Bulls' loss to the Knights.
Among the most respected sports ambassadors in USF history, his backstory (Flowers lost both his parents before he graduated from Miami Jackson High) has been well chronicled locally and nationally.
His only prior indiscretion: an unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty earlier this season against Temple, when he got into a verbal altercation after being driven out of bounds on the Owls sideline.