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Chandler: Bulls are confident

Posted Oct 23, 2013 by Joey Johnston

Updated Oct 23, 2013 at 12:11 PM

According to University of South Florida DT Todd Chandler, one of the team’s more articulate and interesting interview subjects, the Bulls (2-4, 2-0 American Athletic Conference) have great confidence heading into Saturday’s homecoming game against the No. 18-ranked Louisville Cardinals (6-1, 2-1).

Chandler, who played at Miami Northwestern High with Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater, said he was disappointed to see the Cardinals lose against Central Florida 38-35 on Friday night.

“I was real disappointed,’’ Chandler said. “Not because it was Teddy, but because I wanted South Florida to be their first loss, to knock them off their high horse they’re sitting on. UCF played amazing defense. They didn’t quit when Louisville punched them in the mouth. They didn’t even blink an eye. They just came back fighting.

“I know that’s what South Florida is going to do. We’re not even going to blink. You know Louisville is going to make their plays. We’re going to make our plays. It’s going to come down to a defensive game. We’re ready.’‘

Chandler said people called Bridgewater “Teddy Heisman’’ in high school, but “we’re going to end those dreams as well. It’s college. He’s my friend, but we’ve got on two different jerseys.’‘

With an upset, the Bulls would become the first team in school history to begin 3-0 in league play. USF has a 2-0 league record for the first time since 2003 (Conference USA). When USF began 0-4, players continually talked about their top goal remaining, winning an AAC championship. Sometimes, that brought snickers. But USF players are still talking about it. The Bulls know that beating Louisville would create a few more believers.

“We’re not trying to focus on the negative parts of our season,’’ Chandler said. “Those four losses are on the belt. You can’t start over. You can’t press reset. We’ve got to stay hungry and keep this same drive we’ve had the past two games.

“We can still win this (conference) and go to a nice bowl game. One game at a time. We’re trying to go 1-0 (each week). After this week, we’ll be 3-0.’‘




Rudd, Collins on AAC 2nd team

Posted Oct 16, 2013 by Joey Johnston

Updated Oct 16, 2013 at 09:59 AM

The two remaining players from the University of South Florida’s 2012 NCAA Tournament team—senior forward Victor Rudd and junior point guard Anthony Collins—got some respect Wednesday from the American Athletic Conference coaches when they were named second-team preseason All-AAC. The announcement was made during AAC Media Day in Memphis, Tenn.

If the Bulls hope to rebound from last season’s 12-19, 3-15 nightmare in the Big East Conference, Rudd and Collins must show the way.

“We want to be the leaders,’’ Rudd said. “Truthfully, we’ve been doing that all along, since the (new players) got here. We’re always pulling them aside, showing them how to go about things. That’s the role we need to fill.’‘

USF, selected for 10th in the 10-team league by several preseason magazines, was picked eighth by the coaches, just ahead of UCF and Rutgers.

Here is the complete poll.

American Athletic Conference

Preseason Coaches Poll

1. Louisville (9), 81 points

2. UConn (1), 69

3. Memphis, 68

4. Cincinnati, 58

5. Temple, 40

6. SMU, 39

7. Houston, 28

8. USF, 27

9. UCF, 24

10. Rutgers 16

Individual Honors

Preseason Player of the Year— Russ Smith, G, Sr., Louisville

Preseason Rookie of the Year— Keith Frazier, G, Fr. SMU

Preseason All-Conference

First Team

Sean Kilpatrick, G, Cincinnati

Shabazz Napier, G, UConn

Chane Behanan, F, Louisville

Russ Smith, G, Louisville

Joe Jackson, G, Memphis

Second Team

Isaiah Sykes, G, UCF

Ryan Boatright, G, UConn

TaShawn Thomas, F, Houston

Montrezl Harrell, F, Louisville

Anthony Collins, G, USF

Victor Rudd, F, USF




USF men: Under the radar

Posted Oct 15, 2013 by Joey Johnston

Updated Oct 15, 2013 at 02:41 PM

There probably won’t be much buzz when the University of South Florida contingent—Coach Stan Heath, senior forward Victor Rudd and junior point guard Anthony Collins—appears at Wednesday’s American Athletic Conference men’s basketball media day in Memphis, Tenn.

In fact, if the preseason magazines are any indication, there’s a chance USF could be picked for 10th place in the 10-team league.

Heath doesn’t seem to mind. In fact, he sort of welcomes the underdog mentality that was such an integral part of USF’s NCAA Tournament team in 2011-12.

“I can understand how people might look at our team (12-19 last season) and say, ‘Well, they lost Toarlyn Fitzpatrick, they lost Shaun Noriega, they lost Jawanza Poland ... and they couldn’t score anyway,’ ‘’ Heath said. “I can see where people don’t expect much.

“But I really, really, really feel like we’re better. Maybe a lot better. We’re much deeper and much better. I really don’t care where they’re picking it us. We’ve got to prove it anyway.’‘

Rudd and Collins are the only players remaining from that NCAA Tournament team, but much of Heath’s optimism is based around the maturation of sophomores Zach LeDay and JaVontae Hawkins, plus a six-player recruiting class led by big men John Egbunu and Chris Perry.

“We’re still going to have our work cut out for us,’’ Heath said. “It (AAC) is a good league. When the Big East (broke up), people might say, ‘Hey, we’re not going to be in as good a place now.’ But this will be a powerful league with Louisville, Memphis, UConn, Cincnnnati, Temple ... and right on down the line. Plus, it’s a true (double round-robin) league and we’ve got to play everybody twice.

“I don’t expect people to make us much of a factor, especially early on. That’s OK. We’ve proven to be pretty good in the underdog role in the past. We’re fine with it. I like our team a lot and I can’t wait to get started.’‘




USF men: Under the radar

Posted Oct 15, 2013 by Joey Johnston

Updated Oct 15, 2013 at 02:42 PM

There probably won’t be much buzz when the University of South Florida contingent—Coach Stan Heath, senior forward Victor Rudd and junior point guard Anthony Collins—appears at Wednesday’s American Athletic Conference men’s basketball media day in Memphis, Tenn.

In fact, if the preseason magazines are any indication, there’s a chance USF could be picked for 10th place in the 10-team league.

Heath doesn’t seem to mind. In fact, he sort of welcomes the underdog mentality that was such an integral part of USF’s NCAA Tournament team in 2011-12.

“I can understand how people might look at our team (12-19 last season) and say, ‘Well, they lost Toarlyn Fitzpatrick, they lost Shaun Noriega, they lost Jawanza Poland ... and they couldn’t score anyway,’ ‘’ Heath said. “I can see where people don’t expect much.

“But I really, really, really feel like we’re better. Maybe a lot better. We’re much deeper and much better. I really don’t care where they’re picking it us. We’ve got to prove it anyway.’‘

Rudd and Collins are the only players remaining from that NCAA Tournament team, but much of Heath’s optimism is based around the maturation of sophomores Zach LeDay and JaVontae Hawkins, plus a six-player recruiting class led by big men John Egbunu and Chris Perry.

“We’re still going to have our work cut out for us,’’ Heath said. “It (AAC) is a good league. When the Big East (broke up), people might say, ‘Hey, we’re not going to be in as good a place now.’ But this will be a powerful league with Louisville, Memphis, UConn, Cincnnnati, Temple ... and right on down the line. Plus, it’s a true (double round-robin) league and we’ve got to play everybody twice.

“I don’t expect people to make us much of a factor, especially early on. That’s OK. We’ve proven to be pretty good in the underdog role in the past. We’re fine with it. I like our team a lot and I can’t wait to get started.’‘




USF men: Under the radar

Posted Oct 15, 2013 by Joey Johnston

Updated Oct 15, 2013 at 02:42 PM

There probably won’t be much buzz when the University of South Florida contingent—Coach Stan Heath, senior forward Victor Rudd and junior point guard Anthony Collins—appears at Wednesday’s American Athletic Conference men’s basketball media day in Memphis, Tenn.

In fact, if the preseason magazines are any indication, there’s a chance USF could be picked for 10th place in the 10-team league.

Heath doesn’t seem to mind. In fact, he sort of welcomes the underdog mentality that was such an integral part of USF’s NCAA Tournament team in 2011-12.

“I can understand how people might look at our team (12-19 last season) and say, ‘Well, they lost Toarlyn Fitzpatrick, they lost Shaun Noriega, they lost Jawanza Poland ... and they couldn’t score anyway,’ ‘’ Heath said. “I can see where people don’t expect much.

“But I really, really, really feel like we’re better. Maybe a lot better. We’re much deeper and much better. I really don’t care where they’re picking it us. We’ve got to prove it anyway.’‘

Rudd and Collins are the only players remaining from that NCAA Tournament team, but much of Heath’s optimism is based around the maturation of sophomores Zach LeDay and JaVontae Hawkins, plus a six-player recruiting class led by big men John Egbunu and Chris Perry.

“We’re still going to have our work cut out for us,’’ Heath said. “It (AAC) is a good league. When the Big East (broke up), people might say, ‘Hey, we’re not going to be in as good a place now.’ But this will be a powerful league with Louisville, Memphis, UConn, Cincnnnati, Temple ... and right on down the line. Plus, it’s a true (double round-robin) league and we’ve got to play everybody twice.

“I don’t expect people to make us much of a factor, especially early on. That’s OK. We’ve proven to be pretty good in the underdog role in the past. We’re fine with it. I like our team a lot and I can’t wait to get started.’‘