USF's spring game draft was held Saturday afternoon. Green coach Chuck Bresnahan and White coach Ron Cooper made the first 30 picks of the draft in front of the entire team, before the coaches adjourned to divvy up the rest of the players. The rosters have been posted (see the link above), and here are a few thoughts after looking them over:
1. Don't read anything into the order of the players who weren't in the top 30 picks. They're all in alphabetical order. I don't think Jimel Atkins is ahead of Sterling Griffin or D'vario Montgomery on the depth chart.
2. The first overall pick, perhaps not surprisingly because of how few proven players are at his position, was DeDe Lattimore. But I think I would have rattled off 40 or 50 names before I would have predicted Max Djulbegovic at #2. Or for that matter, Brynjar Gudmundsson at #3.
3. Neither team waited long to build their defensive line. Aaron Lynch and Luke Sager were both free-agent pickups, and Anthony Hill was the 8th lineman off the board at #22.
4. I don't know what to make of Andre Davis lasting until #18, unless they don't plan on throwing the ball that much. Or maybe the teams already know what they have in him and decided to spend some earlier picks on different players to throw them into the fire, like all those offensive linemen trying to block Lynch and Lattimore and Mark Joyce, who went sixth.
5. I'm not surprised Sean Price went at #15. He's the obvious breakout candidate this season.
6. Certain teams have big advantages at specific positions, like the White team at running back. But the entire teams look pretty close on paper. But we'll be happy to hear counterarguments in the comments.
The softball team throttled Pittsburgh this weekend, sweeping all three games and outscoring the Panthers 22-1. Sara Nevins threw her first no-hitter of the season and the fourth of her USF career in the opener on Saturday, which the Bulls won 10-0. Kourtney Salvarola hit her 12th home run of the season in Saturday's second game, a 7-1 USF victory. Then Nevins nearly threw another no-hitter on Sunday, allowing just one hit in six innings of work. Lindsey Richardson came in to close out a 5-0 shutout.
USF's record is up to 32-11 on the season, which is especially impressive since it includes a dismal 1-9 stretch in late February. Outside of that two-week stretch, the Bulls are 31-2. They'll get a chance to avenge one of the losses in that slump on Wednesday when they travel to Gainesville to face the third-ranked Gators. After that, Providence visits for a weekend series.
The baseball team's sweep of Pittsburgh wasn't nearly as easy as the softball team's. All three games were won by one run, led off by Jimmy Herget's spectacular effort on Friday night. The freshman pitcher threw a complete-game, three-hit shutout, and Jimmy Falla's RBI single in the first inning held up all evening for a 1-0 win.
Saturday's game went to USF by the score of 7-6, aided by a major meltdown in the PIttsburgh bullpen. The Panthers carried a 6-4 lead into the bottom of the 9th, but the Bulls managed to win the game even though only one ball left the infield. USF had a hit and a sacrifice bunt, and the Panthers issued two walks (one was intentional and appeared to be spectacularly idiotic since it put the winning run on base), hit two batters, and threw a wild pitch. The second HBP, with the bases loaded and one out, ended up being the game-winning play.
USF rallied a bit more conventionally on Sunday for a 3-2 win. Trailing 2-1 in the 8th inning, Falla tied the game with an RBI single. Then in the bottom of the 9th, Zac Gilcrease led off with a double and was sacrificed over to third. After the Panthers intentionally walked the bases loaded to set up a double play and a force at home, James Ramsay won the game with an RBI single.
The Bulls step out of conference this week to play a midweek game with C. Florida on Wednesday, and then a weekend series against Alcorn State. All four games will be played at the USF Baseball Stadium.