TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 25: Linebacker Sam Barrington #36 and coach Skip Holtz of the South Florida Bulls take the field for play against the Louisville Cardinals November 25, 2011 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Louisville won 34 - 24. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
The Bulls are on a short week, and of all teams to play on four days' rest/practice, it had to be Rutgers who comes to town for a Thursday night primetime special. Maybe there will be a case of two wrongs making a right, given USF's history on Thursday and against the Scarlet Knights. Here's what the rest of the blog world thinks about tonight's matchup.
QB B.J. Daniels leads South Florida Bulls into showdown with Big East nemesis Rutgers Scarlet Knights -- Tampa Bay Times
The title is a bit too long to be catchy in my opinion, but either way, it's USF QB B.J. Daniels's last chance at a Big East title. He's 1-2 against the Scarlet Knights in his career, and evening that record tonight would be more than just a "W" on the schedule. It all starts with getting that elusive Rutgers win, and against a team that led the league in defense last year, that won't come easy.
Speaking of Rutgers's defense...
Rutgers defense presents tough test for USF -- TBO.com
Rutgers played some solid defense under Greg Schiano, who served as Defensive Coordinator as well as Head Coach. Now that he's gone, new DC Robb Smith is picking up right where Schiano left off. Not to mention the preseason All-American Linebacker on the team.
USF ended up using pretty much all the resources in the comeback win in Reno, and with a great outcome. Now, the team is back home, but worn down. They will likely be relying greatly on that WR and RB rotation tonight, and hopefully the secondary doesn't tire out too fast.
Joey Johnston previewed tonight's matchup with a few keys to victory, a Nevada review, and a nice Q&A session with USF TE Evan Landi. Good thing Landi chose not to pursue hockey. Also, you can see where you can catch the game if you're unable to make it to Raymond James tonight. Joey predicts another close one tonight. I may need to pack a defibrillator in my tailgate cooler if that's the case.
The Oracle talks to a few players about what it's like to play on ESPN and how they feel about having a conference game this early in the season. The coaches talk a bit about what challenges they face, other than only having four days to prepare for this game.
You may recall last year's USF game at Rutgers. I almost went to it, but at the last minute decided not to. I blame myself for the loss. The Bulls, however, don't blame me. They don't really blame anyone, because they're past it, and they're trying to right all the wrongs from last football season, starting with Rutgers. I don't know if you call this a rivalry or what, but it's something.
It's always nice to hear from the enemy. In OTB's preview of the USF game, they make it clear that this will be a showdown between B.J Daniels and Gary Nova.Again, Rutgers's defense is the big talking point. Don't expect another three 50+ yard TD passes tonight.
Jerry looks back on Rutgers's first two games of the season and compares them to RU's slow starts in both 2010 and 2006. In 2010, many will remember the almost-loss to FIU and the embarrassing defeat by Tulane in their only losing season since the Big East was restructured. 2006 was a bit more favorable for the Knights, tying for second in the conference standings and finishing #12 in the final polls. Or course, Ray Rice is no longer with them. Also, not to self-promote, but I did a Q&A session with Jerry at the end. Last year, I enjoyed reading the RU fans' comments making fun of me for thinking USF would win.
Also, you better shut your mouth and quit jinxing us, Rece Davis from ESPN.