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Three takeaways from USF’s romp of East Carolina

Bulls fans should be encouraged about both Jordans (McCloud and Cronkrite) after Saturday’s 45-20 romp
USF tailback Jordan Cronkrite (2), taking a handoff earlier this season at Connecticut, had 12 carries for 129 yards and two touchdowns in Saturday's 45-20 win at East Carolina. [MICHAEL DWYER  |  AP]
USF tailback Jordan Cronkrite (2), taking a handoff earlier this season at Connecticut, had 12 carries for 129 yards and two touchdowns in Saturday's 45-20 win at East Carolina. [MICHAEL DWYER | AP]
Published Oct. 26
Updated Oct. 27

We now can dispense with any talk about a coaching change until Thanksgiving weekend at the earliest. Even if the Bulls had embarrassed themselves at ECU to fall to 3-5, the odds of athletic director Michael Kelly making a bye-week change seemed remote. Now, they’re nonexistent. Heck, if the Bulls can replicate Saturday’s performance (525 total yards), they could steal a win or two in November.

MORE BULLS: USF solves a few recent woes on the road at East Carolina

Presuming the injuries to Jordan McCloud (ankle) and wildcat option Jah’Quez Evans (head) aren’t serious, one should feel better today about USF’s quarterback depth. Until getting dinged up again Saturday, McCloud was mobile (four carries, 51 yards) and efficient (9-for-12, 102 yards, two TDs) against ECU. And while walk-on Kirk Rygol miscommunicated badly with his receivers on his first two throws, he finished with some solid numbers (6-for-12, 74 yards, one TD; four carries, 31 yards) in significant action. His 24-yard scoring strike to Terrence Horne was an absolute dart.

The resurgence of Jordan Cronkrite has emerged as arguably USF’s most uplifting story line of October. In the Bulls’ first four games, Cronkrite was virtually invisible (33 carries, 72 yards, two TDs). In their last four: 75 carries, 511 yards, four TDs. The senior had 129 and a pair of TDs on only 12 carries Saturday.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. New FAU coach Willie Taggart faces one of his old teams, USF, on Sept. 26, 2020 in Boca Raton. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times] [JONES, OCTAVIO  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    He moves to his fourth program in the past 36 months. Adding intrigue to the hire, FAU hosts USF in 2020.
  2. (From left) USF Bulls mascot 'Rocky the Bull", new USF football coach Jeff Scott, his wife Sara and their 4-year-old daughter Savannah pose for photos after his announcement at the Sam and Martha Gibbons Alumni Center on Wednesday [OCTAVIO JONES | Times] [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    The fifth football coach in USF history seems to hit all the right notes to a standing-room-only crowd
  3. LSU players celebrate after the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game against Georgia, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, in Atlanta. LSU won 37-10. [JOHN BAZEMORE  |  AP]
    “Members of Congress care about college sports. They recognize how important it is to American society."
  4. Jeff Scott is introduced as the new USF football coach at the Sam and Martha Gibbons Alumni Center in Tampa on Wednesday, [OCTAVIO JONES | Times] [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    Signs and sound bites indicate the Clemson co-offensive coordinator was the Bulls’ top choice all along
  5. Jeff Scott is introduced as the new USF Bulls head football coach at the University of South Florida Sam and Martha Gibbons Alumni Center in Tampa, Florida on Wednesday, December 11, 2019.  [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    In fact, here’s how he did it as a Clemson walk-on in 2001
  6. In this Jan. 5 file photo, Clemson Tigers co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott speaks with media during media day at the SAP Center prior to the College Football Playoff national championship game  vs. the Alabama Crimson Tide at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. [ADAM LACY  |  ZUMAPRESS.com]
    Scott will be the sixth assistant to keep working for a College Football Playoff team while serving as an incoming head coach elsewhere.
  7. New USF football coach Jeff Scott receives a de facto $500,000 signing bonus on Jan. 17, 2020. [ JACOB KUPFERMAN  |  ZUMAPRESS.com]
    The former Clemson co-offensive coordinator must pay USF $2.5 million if he leaves on his own before Dec. 31 2020.
  8. New USF coach Jeff Scott has spent the last 12 seasons on the staff at Clemson, his alma mater. [ADAM LACY  |  ZUMAPRESS.com]
    The fifth Bulls coach in program history will appear at the Sam & Martha Gibbons Alumni Center.
  9. Clemson co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott talks with receivers Mike Williams (7) and Artavis Scott (3) during a 2016 game at FSU. Scott was named USF's coach Monday. [DAVID GROOMS/CAL SPORT MEDIA  |  ZUMAPRESS.com]
    Though not the bay area’s primary recruiter for Clemson, Scott’s fingerprints are all over the region.
  10. USF announced Monday it has hired Clemson alumnus and Tigers co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott as its new coach. [JACOB KUPFERMAN  |  ZUMAPRESS.com]
    The 38-year-old Florida native will be introduced on campus Wednesday.
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