Archive for the ‘USF-Auburn’ Category

USF remains unranked after win

September 10, 2007

By Natalie Gagliordi and Jennifer Teuber

The University of South Florida remains unranked after the Bulls upset Auburn 26-23 in overtime at the Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday night.
USF started the game strong, scoring two touchdowns in the first quarter. However, their momentum slowed as they went into halftime with the score at 17-14. The USF defense forced five turnovers, but could not turn those into points on the board.
Delbert Alvarado, the USF kicker, missed four out of six field goals. One of the two he did sink sent the game to overtime, where quarterback Matt Grothe threw a 14-yard touchdown to win the game.
Despite the win, today’s coaches’ and writers’ poll ranked USF just outside the Top 25.
According to an interview with The Tampa Tribune, head coach jim Leavitt is not discouraged by the rankings.
“I know when we’ve accomplished something,” Leavitt said. “I don’t need anyone to tell me.”
Tyler Weir, 23-year-old mass communications major at USF, agreed that the rankings are not all that important.
“What good does it do to be ranked in the second week?” Weir said.
The lack of position on national rankings does not seem to dampen the morale of USF student fans, who feel that the Bulls are heading in the right direction.
“We have to work our way up there [the Top 25] eventually,” said Amanda Kraemer, a 21-year-old marketing major at USF. “I think we need to win by larger margins. That could be why we aren’t getting ranked, because it was an extremely even game.”
According to Weir, this game could be a stepping point for USF. If they do in fact win against their next opponents, it will propel them into the Top 25.
“Maybe we don’t deserve to be ranked,” Weir said “But if we beat West Virginia and North Carolina, we deserve to be ranked.”
In the ten years since the Bulls football program started, there have been turbulent ups and downs, which persistently marked the seasons. Coach Leavitt acknowledges the work that needs to be done in order to get his team to the top.
“You feel content because you accomplished what you went out to do,” said Leavitt on “But the highs are never as high as the lows are low. We made a lot of mistakes against Auburn, and we need to get a lot better.”


September 10, 2007

By: Eric Moeller and Shantrell Scott

Despite upsetting then-No. 17 Auburn in Alabama on Saturday, this week’s major national polls still have USF on the outside looking in.

The polls have the Bulls ranked No. 26 in the Associated Press Poll while the Coach’s poll has USF at No. 27 — just behind the recovering Auburn Tigers.

While it might seem surprising that an upset on the road against a ranked SEC team wasn’t enough to earn the Bulls their first-ever national Top 25, it wasn’t a shock to USF quarterback Matt Grothe, who voiced his opinion of the voters following the game on Saturday.

“Honestly, I don’t think the coach’s poll gives a rat’s ass about us,” Grothe said. “I don’t think we will be ranked. But, I think a win (against UNC) would definitely solidify us in the Top 25.”

Grothe’s opinion on the voters echoes those of many USF students, who feel that last weekend’s upset of the Tigers should have been enough to propel to Bulls into the Top 25.

“I don’t think we’re getting enough respect at all,” said C.J. Hermida, a senior majoring in communications at USF. “I don’t really understand how we can be behind the team that we just beat.”

Many students on the USF campus feel that the Bulls deserve more credit, especially with Saturday’s victory marking the third time USF has upset a Top 25 team in the last three years. The Bulls earned their first win against a ranked team in 2005 by defeating then-No. 9 Louisville and followed it up last season with a upset over then-No. 7 West Virginia.

“I think we deserve more credit,” said Paul Maxwell, a senior majoring in environmental science. “Every single year we have a different upset it seems like. We should be ranked by now, but if we keep doing that we’ll get there eventually.”

There is one thing that everyone on the USF campus knows. The easiest way for the Bulls to ensure a Top 25 ranking is by defeating No. 4 West Virginia, which makes a trip to Tampa to face the Bulls on Sept. 28.

“(I think we have to) beat UNC, a team that we should beat and then beat West Virginia,” Maxwell said. “(The Mountaineers) are coming here into our house and they’re going to be stoked to beat us because be beat them last year. So, if we beat West Virginia I think we can shoot right up the polls.”

While their rank in this week’s polls might be disappointing to the Bulls, they can take solace in the knowledge that the man calling the plays for last year’s national championship team has taken notice of the USF and holds a high opinion of the school.

“I think they’re already there,” Urban Meyer, coach of the Florida Gators, said to the St. Petersburg Times. “I think (USF coach Jim Leavitt) is doing a great job. I coached against him one time and he beat us. They’ve got a good program. A very good program.”

No Bull about USF win over Auburn

September 10, 2007

By Natalie Shultz & Courtney Herrig

The USF Bulls are good, but maybe not good enough… yet.

USF (2-0) had some big firsts Saturday night against Auburn in an overtime victory of 26-23. They became the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl National Team of the Week for college football games played the weekend of Sept. 8. They also beat an SEC opponent for the first time. Sophomore Defensive Back Nate Allen was the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week and Quarterback Matt Grothe was inducted into the BIG EAST Honor Roll.

According to week two NCAA rankings by the Associated Press and USA Today, the Bulls missed the top twenty-five by one and two spots respectively.

USF’s Coach Jim Leavitt says he isn’t worried about numbers.

“I know when we’ve accomplished something,” Leavitt said. “I don’t need anyone to tell me.”

Graduate student Don Surrency watched the game long-distance from Tampa and says USF should be ranked at least twenty-fifth. Surrency says he thinks the ranking is unfair because “USF beat Auburn at an away game and that should be a notable contributing factor” for an increase in their national ranking.

Surrency says the Bulls will increase their poll standings as they rack up more wins against other top-ranked teams. He says higher rankings will also draw in more students to the university.
“More students will want to apply to USF because of the name recognition,” Surrency said.
Junior Vivianne Fleishman says the ranking system is fair and is thrilled that USF is ranked twenty-sixth.

“USF’s football team will only get better,” Fleishman said.

Leavitt shares Fleishman’s optimism about the remainder of the 2007 season.

“I am proud of the battling we did,” head coach Jim Leavitt said after the game. “It was a big win for us.”

The Bulls will go on to play North Carolina Sept. 22 after a break this week.

High Hopes after the USF/ Auburn game

September 10, 2007

Christine Wolstenholme
Courtney Allen

University of South Florida students have high hopes for the upcoming season, especially after the Bulls won in overtime, 26-23, against No. 17 Auburn in Auburn, Ala. on Saturday night, which could lead to a ranking.

The AP Writer’s poll ranked USF 26th, ahead of Auburn, while the coaches’ poll announced USF 27th and Auburn at 26th.

“I don’t think the coaches’ poll gives a rat’s (expletive) about us and I don’t think we will be ranked,” Matt Grothe, the USF quarterback, told the St. Petersburg Times. “I think a win will have to definitely solidify us in the Top 25.”

USF has been playing in the Big East for the past three years. In 2005 they beat Louisville, which was ranked No. 8, 45-14. In 2006 they defeated West Virginia, which was ranked No. 7, 24-19.

Awab Nasree, a sophomore at USF, said, “We’re a force to be reckoned with. Hopefully Saturday’s game set a precedent for the rest of the season.”

Matthew Aycox, a defensive-end for USF, said, “We’re an older, more experienced team then last year. The whole summer we trained with a different mindset, to be better then before.”

Jim Leavitt has been the only coach since USF’s football team began in 1997 and they’ve been a full 1-A Division member since 2001.

“You feel content because you accomplish what you want to do,” Leavitt told USA Today. “But the highs are never as high as the lows are low. We made a lot of mistakes against Auburn, and we need to get a lot better.”

USF is set to play North Carolina on Sept. 22 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.

USF ranks as 27th after win at Auburn

September 10, 2007

By Priscilla Mader, Tiffany Talley

TAMPA, Fla. – On last Saturday, it was a fight to the finish. With over 80,000 screaming fans on the edges of their seats, University of South Florida (USF) won in an overtime battle against Auburn with a score of 26-23.

“This is my all time favorite win because it happened on my birthday,” said USF quarterback Matt Grothe.

To Grothe and many other players and fans, it indeed was an unforgettable game ending with the USF Bulls scoring during the final minutes with a 14-yard touchdown made by Jesse Hester.

According to St. Petersburg Times, “Grothe converted a fourth-and-1 in overtime, then found Hester wide-open to give the Bulls their third win against a ranked team in as many years.”

USF coach Jim Leavitt said to the St. Petersburg Times,  ‘It’s going to give us confidence.”

With this big win in place, USF still ranks as 27th on the coaches poll with Auburn remaining as 26th.

Keith Gray, a USF mentor of the College of Business Administration feels shafted. “It was a big win for us. It is tough to play in front of 80,000 people. We should be in the top 25. Hawaii is there, why can’t we be?”

However, Devon Grady, a junior and biology major at USF feels the ranking isn’t important at this point. “We will really get the ranking we deserve after we beat University of North Carolina.”

According to, it may be good that the Bulls are off this week. They get to rest and get ready for visits from North Carolina on Sept. 22 and West Virginia on Sept. 28

Bulls remain out of the top 25

September 10, 2007

Aaron Oberlin and Marilu Muzzi

TEMPLE TERRACE, Fla. – The University of South Florida Bulls remains out of the top 25 in the AP and Coaches Poll after defeating the No. 17 Auburn Tigers Saturday night 26-23.

Auburn still remains ahead of USF in the Coaches Poll. Auburn is No. 26 with 131 points. USF is No. 27 with 115.
USF head coach Jim Leavitt said, “I don’t get caught up in that, because I have no control over it.”

The fans get a chance to vote at the ESPNU Allstate Standings Fan Poll, which has USF at No. 23 with almost 600 first place votes.

USF student Ron Arbisi, an education major, says, “Who do we have to beat to get into the top 20?”

This isn’t the first time USF has upset a ranked team, but it is their first victory over a Southeastern Conference team. In 2005, they beat No. 8 Louisville 45-14 at home. Last year, in Morgantown, they beat No. 7 West Virginia.

Athletics director Doug Woolard said the win gives the program credibility and moves it forward.

Leavitt said he was content with victory. “We made a lot of mistakes against Auburn, and we need to get a lot better.”

The Bulls almost lost the game after Delbert Alvarado missed four field goals in the second half. He kicked a game-tying field goal near the end of the game to send it to overtime. Some of the players on the field seemed like they wanted to go for the win on fourth down.

USF senior Patrick Rodriguez, a biomedical science major, says, “We need a new kicker. It is just luck that we won.”

Cheryl McCoy, a USF library faculty member, said it was a safe move to tie the game.

The Bulls won with a 14-yard touchdown pass by sophomore quarterback Matt Grothe to sophomore wide receiver Jesse Hester Jr.

ESPN will air the USF game against North Carolina on Sept. 22. It starts at noon. They will also air the Bulls against No. 4 West Virginia on Sept. 28.