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April 9, 2011

What to watch for in Saturday's scrimmage

A few things fans should be keeping an eye on as the Bulls close out spring practice with the "Green and Gold" Bowl (open to public) on campus at 5 p.m. today …

The quarterbacks: An interesting subplot to spring practice has emerged with the strong play of freshman early enrollee Matt Floyd, who was the best QB of last weekend's spring game. How will Floyd build on his recent performance? And will Bobby Eveld, currently listed as the backup to B.J. Daniels on the depth chart, be effective (or even participate) after suffering a jaw injury last week? He practiced this week. Meanwhile, Daniels is looking to improve on a 13-for-29 (though with some dropped passes by receivers) performance in the spring game.

The wide receivers: New faces emerged - Derrick Hopkins caught a 70-yard touchdown and Terrence Mitchell made plays, to name a few - but for the most part, the Bulls passing game was inconsistent, and one of the main reasons was because of dropped passes. Sophomore Sterling Griffin, who missed all of last season due to injury, is still looking to regain his freshman form after dropping a few passes last week. Mitchell appears to be ready to contribute after moving from cornerback last season. Will that continue? With Lindsey Lamar and A.J. Love not expected to play, there will be plenty of opportunities for young guys to step up.

The pass defense: USF coach Skip Holtz said after the spring game one of the defense's priorities was improving its pass defense. Several opportunities for big plays opened up last week. To be fair, USF's secondary has been decimated by injuries this spring but for the most part, the starters - CB Quenton Washington, FS Jerrell Young, SS Jon Lejiste, and CB Kayvon Webster - have played. Depth at cornerback has been a concern, however, because of injuries to backups Ricardo Dixon, Tyson Butler, and Spencer Boyd. Walk-on Ernie Tabuteau, listed as a second-team cornerback on the depth chart, has been one of the pleasant surprises of the spring.


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