South Florida Bulls 2013 College Football Preview
2012 Overall: 3-9 (1-6)
Raymond James Stadium
The South Florida Bulls hope for redemption in 2013 after a disappointing 3-9 2012 season. The Bulls will need to break in a new quarterback and many unknown skill players for him to share the ball with as they try to move forward from the worst season in the program’s 16 year history.
OFFENSE: With a new quarterback comes a new head coach as South Florida welcomes former Western Kentucky coach Willie Taggart. Taggart has made the development of Senior quarterback Bobby Eveld his main priority. Eveld is a 6-5 gunslinger who saw his 2012 season end early with a shoulder injury, has a leg up on backup Matt Floyd who had his bumps when thrown into the fire after injuries to Eveld and BJ Daniels. The USF offense will feature Marcus Shaw in the backfield. With the departure of Demetris Murray, Shaw will be the focus of this unproven offense out of the gates. Shaw showed flashes late in the season last year and finished with 248 total yards. Andre Davis is the top returning wideout for the Bulls and the entire offensive line saw action at times last year so Eveld and Shaw should have reliable protection up front as they get used to the week to week workload.
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DEFENSE: After a steady start to last season, the USF defense completely folded down the stretch and were especially inept at forcing turnovers where they only tallied two picks on the entire year. The Bulls will feature an entirely new cornerback duo with Kenneth Durden and Josh Brown taking over for two departing seniors. The Bulls return impact defensive end Tevin Mims and are eager to feature Aaron Lynch opposite him. Mims racked up 35 tackles and 2 sacks in 2012 while sharing time. Look for DeDe Lattimore to step in and replace top tackler Sam Barrington. Another Bull to watch is freshman Nigel Harris who will be expected to step in and spell Lattimore out of the gate.
SPECIAL TEAMS: The Bulls return a kicker with plenty of game experience in Marvin Kloss, but Kloss’s experience has been limited to kickoffs as the Bulls placekicking duties were handled by Maikon Bonani -- USF’s career scoring leader. Kloss will have to step in to big shoes but early returns are he picked up plenty of tips from his mentor.
OUTLOOK: The Bulls are likely in for another sub .500 season. They should be better on offense with the more potent scheme that Taggart will employ but Bobby Eveld has not proven to be anything more than serviceable thus far in his collegiate career. If Eveld can build some synergy with his wideouts and Marcus Shaw can pick up where he left off late last season, the Bulls may be able to steal a game or two from some very vulnerable defenses in this league. Moving forward, Willie Taggart should be able to use the hotbed of talent and quality facilities that the Bulls have to offer as good selling points to have USF back in the bowl conversation pretty quickly.