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USF offense mistake-prone in final scrimmage

Posted Aug 26, 2011 by Adam Adkins

Updated Aug 26, 2011 at 11:18 PM

USF’s final scrimmage of the fall was supposed to offer the chance “to grease everything up and get everything ready to go,” as Bulls coach Skip Holtz put it. But after a poor showing from the offense Friday, Holtz was more than happy to have another week of preparation before opening the season at Notre Dame.

The closed scrimmage, which matched first team units against each other (and same for second teams), had far too may offensive mistakes, according to Holtz, with a majority of them coming early.

“There for a while, probably the first hour of this scrimmage, I thought we looked a lot like last year’s offense,” Holtz said. “Making mistakes, turning the ball over, bad field position. Those type of things.

“I thought they came back and they put some good drives together later in the scrimmage. They just made way too many mistakes early, and our second offense – way too many mistakes with our twos.”

USF QB B.J. Daniels did throw two scoring passes, to WRs Sterling Griffin (on third-and-long from the 18, according to Holtz) and Lindsey Lamar, but the offenses combined for at least four turnovers. At least one interception occurred after a receiver had the ball hit off his hands, and there were also two fumbles.

Daniels felt the offense did some good things, but when asked if whether he thought the unit was where it needed to be, he responded, “Today, I’m going to say no.”

“We have assessed things that we can work on,” Daniels said. “Everything’s not going to go perfectly every day, but we still have some time. We’re going to do whatever we can right now to make sure we’re ready.”

The biggest concern for Holtz with a week left before the first game continues to be depth, though it seems to exist on only one side of the ball now.

“I look at the depth on our defense, and I feel really good about it,” Holtz said. “I look at the depth of our offense, and I think there’s a pretty significant drop off from our ones to our twos.”

FRESHMEN WATSON, DAVIS TURN IN BIG PLAYS: Two freshmen who have turned heads all fall continued doing so Friday, with DT Elkino Watson and WR Andre Davis producing two of the most notable plays during the scrimmage.

Watson shed a block and tipped a screen pass before hauling it in for an interception and returning it for a touchdown. Davis, meanwhile, came up with a nice catch on a deep pass down the sideline.

“It was one-on-one coverage and somebody’s got to go up and make a play, and he went up and made it. Just went up and took it away from him,” Holtz said. “I thought it was a poorly thrown ball and he went up and got it.”

Davis, a Jefferson High product, has consistently made impressive catches on jump-ball situations all fall, and Holtz has been thoroughly impressed.

“If I had to pick one player to go up and get it, he’s the guy that would go up, that I’d pick,” Holtz said. “He’s made more circus catches in camp than I’ve seen really since we’ve been here.”

BULLS BITS: Sophomore WR Stephen Bravo-Brown, who joined program as walk-on in 2010 and caught 11 passes for 104 yards last season as a true freshman, has been placed on scholarship. USF still has one more scholarship available, but Holtz has not determined who it will be awarded to. … The players will vote on team captains for the season Sunday.

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