Spring Practice Primer: South Florida
With BJ Daniels and DeDe Lattimore among fifteen returning starters, Skip Holtz and USF look to bounce back from a disappointing 5-7 finish in 2011.
Spring football is in the air, and with our Spring Practice Primers the Eye On College Football Blog gets you up to speed on what to look for on campuses around the country this spring. Today we look at South Florida.
Spring Practice Starts: March 21
Spring Game: Saturday, April 2 and Saturday, April 9
Three things to look for:
1. One last chance for BJ Daniels to shape his legacy at USF. He's been a three-year starter for the Bulls, but injuries and accuracy issues have resulted in an up-and-down career thus far at South Florida. Daniels is an undeniable competitor, and his hard work paid off in significant improvement from 2010 to 2011. His challenge as a senior will be to repeat his first 2,000 yard passing season, and lead the Bulls back into bowl eligibility. After losing seven of their last eight games, Daniels' improved performance was overshadowed by the team's first bowl-less postseason since joining the Big East in 2005. Now with 8 offensive starters returning, how the Bulls' finish this season will play a big role in how Daniels' is remembered in Tampa. With Daniels' top five receivers returning as well, big things will be expected from the offense this spring and later in the fall.
2. Linebackers leading the way on defense. New defensive coordinator Chris Cosh inherits a Bulls unit with a chance to be really special in 2012. As the team looks to replace several rotation spots along the defensive line and secondary this spring, Cosh could feel comfortable starting the season tomorrow with his linebackers. Senior Sam Barrington, junior DeDe Lattimore, and senior Michael Lanaris all return to make up one of the strongest corps in the Big East. Along with All-Big East second teasers Ryne Giddins and Kayvon Webster, the Bulls are a few pieces away from a really impressive defensive unit for 2012.
3. Lindsey Lamar's move to running back. Senior Lindsey Lamar, arguably one of the fastest players on the Bulls' roster, has been moved into the offensive backfield after two seasons at wide receiver. With Demetris Murray as the only returning running back with significant experience, Lamar will add depth in addition to his explosiveness. Lamar won the Big East indoor track 60-meter championship last month, and was named the Big East Special Teams Player of the Year in 2010 for his work returning kickoffs. At 5-foot-9, 164 pounds, Lamar is undersized for the traditional every-down back; but he could provide a much-needed boost to the Bulls' backfield.
Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the opening kick of the year all the way through the offseason, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. View a preview.
Get CBSSports.com College Football updates on Facebook
The loaded Alabama running back depth chart is losing one name
Give the first-year coach of the Tigers a little bit of time, and he'll be fine
What if, Nick Saban wonders, recruits start skipping their senior year of high school foot...
These three teams could surprise in 2017
The redshirt senior was one of just four returning starters on the Gators' defense
With changes at Texas and Oklahoma, the guys preview the Big 12 in 2017