Barring further coronavirus-related complications, USF quarterback Cade Fortin will be available for the Bulls' conference opener this weekend at No. 15 Cincinnati, Coach Jeff Scott said Monday morning.
A heralded North Carolina transfer, Fortin has been listed as “unavailable” for USF’s first two games, during which the Bulls (1-1) have employed three quarterbacks and have struggled to develop any kind of rhythm in the passing game.
“As of right now (Fortin) is available,” Scott said during his regular Monday-morning radio segment on 620-AM. “Obviously things can change as we go through the week.”
USF had to postpone Saturday’s game at Florida Atlantic after contact tracing from the previous weekend’s contest at Notre Dame indicated several players would be forced to miss the game. Those absences, combined with those already sidelined by positive COVID-19 tests or contact tracing, resulted in USF practicing with only 78 players at one point last week.
“And typically we’d be practicing with about 115 players,” Scott said.
USF has three more rounds of tests scheduled before the Cincinnati game, set to kick off Saturday at 3:30 p.m. The game will be available via live stream on ESPN+.
“We’re very optimistic that we’re gonna be able to play this weekend,” Scott said. “We tested just about every day last week; Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. With all of those tests, we expect to get several of those guys back this week and be ready to go this weekend.”
In other USF news, the school announced its Oct. 10 homecoming game against East Carolina will kick off at 7 p.m. and will be live-streamed via ESPN+. A limited number of fans are expected to be allowed inside Raymond James Stadium for the game, though a formal announcement on capacity still hasn’t been made.
Additionally, senior receiver Eddie McDoom, among a half-dozen Bulls players who opted out of the 2020 season in late summer, has entered the NCAA transfer portal, the Detroit Free Press reported. A Michigan transfer, McDoom had 13 receptions for USF last season after sitting out in ’18.