Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
Blog Entry

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

Posted on: February 21, 2012 9:04 am
Edited on: February 21, 2012 9:40 am
 
The big stretch comes next for USF. (AP)

By Jeff Goodman

What we know: South Florida has already secured double-digit victories in the Big East with four regular-season games remaining. 

What we also know: The Bulls don't have a ton of big-time resume wins, but opportunities remain: The last four games are at Syracuse, Cincinnati, at Louisville and West Virginia. 

What most don't know: Stan Heath was without his most important player, freshman point guard Anthony Collins, for the first five games due to a hip flexor - which included those two bad losses against Old Dominion and Penn State.

That leading scorer Gus Gilchrist was out of the lineup for three games - including the loss to VCU. 

That Jawanza Poland missed the first 11 games of the year due to a suspension (two games) and a back injury (nine games). 

"I know we need to win a game or two the rest of the way," Heath said. "But I don't understand why we're so far on the outside." 

He's right. If the name on the front of the jersey was, say, UConn or Syracuse or even Pittsburgh, the Bulls would be squarely on the right side of The Bubble. Instead, South Florida is looked at as pretenders because they haven't knocked off any of the big boys yet. It's not Stan Heath's fault that the league gave him Pittsburgh and Villanova twice in a year that both programs have taken a major hit. 

"When I first heard that we were given Pittsburgh and Villanova, I thought that someone obviously doesn't like us," Heath said. "Those are perennially two of the best teams in our league." 

"Now, in a way, it's hurt us," he added. "And I don't think it should." 

With Collins in the lineup, the Bulls are 14-8 overall and 10-4 in Big East play. The last time they lost to an unranked team was back in 2011 -- Dec. 28 against UConn. The last three losses are at Notre Dame, at Marquette and at Georgetown. 

"He's been the difference for us," Heath said of Collins. "He plays so hard and is so tough." 

And he can play. Heath said that Baylor recruited him out of Houston, but the Bears opted to take junior college point guard Pierre Jackson instead. Collins went for a career-high 22 points and dished out six assists last night in a road win at Pittsburgh. Now it's off to Syracuse. Then back home to face Cincinnati, to Louisville and the regular-season finale at home against West Virginia.

"I'm not saying we should definitely be in right now," Heath said. "But I think we should be in the conversation." 


Comments

Since: Sep 19, 2008
Posted on: February 22, 2012 1:12 pm
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

If the name on the front of the jersey was, say, UConn or Syracuse or even Pittsburgh, the Bulls would be squarely on the right side of The Bubble


FACE IT THE BULLS ARE NOT UCONN, SYRACUSE, OR PITTSBURGH.   REPUTATION STINKS, UNTIL YOU HAVE 10 -15 YEARS OF SUCCESS THEN COME AND TALK.  STOP WHINING AND HOPE YOUR TEAM WINS OUT AND A COUPLE OF WINS IN BIG EAST.   YOU LOST TO PENN STATE FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.  



Since: Nov 23, 2009
Posted on: February 22, 2012 11:11 am
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

If the name on the front of the jersey was, say, UConn or Syracuse or even Pittsburgh, the Bulls would be squarely on the right side of The Bubble.
OK Jeff - that explains why Cuse is left out pretty much every time they're on the bubble. 



Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2012 10:06 am
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

The bottom line: if this school's numbers were put up blind with no name on the school, it would be in the tournament based on its Big East record.
If you want to make it really blind let's look at based on how they played & who they played and leave out their conference affiliation.

Quality wins - 1 point victory at home against Seton Hall.

Other wins twice each against Pitt, Villanova & Providence.  Wins aginst Rutgers, St Johns, DePaul.  A bunch of home wins against really bad teams (with 1 or 2 minor exceptions) including a 2 point home victory against Vermont.

Games against top opponents - 30 point loss at Georgetown, 20 point loss at Marquette, 28 point loss at Kansas, 11 point loss at Notre Dame.

OOC road games - losses to VCU by 23,  Auburn by 12 & Southern Miss by 2 and home losses to ODU, Penn State. Not one OOC road win.

Put this blind resume up against other teams and I don't see how they deserve to be in.  Plain and simple, take this resume and plop it down in any other conference and USF isn't even in the conversation.  As a member of the Big East, I wouldn't cry about the selection committe as more often than not they favor the Big East over other less "sexy" schools and conferences.

Also, "for those who have trouble understanding" there is plenty of quality basketball being played by teams outside the Big East with teams whose rosters are also filled with second tier recruits and transfers.



Since: Sep 19, 2011
Posted on: February 22, 2012 9:49 am
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

Only fact you need to know is South Florida has won all of their games against Big East teams that are below .500. Instead of crying, beat the remaining teams above .500 on your schedule and you are squarely in. Lose and ...



Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: February 22, 2012 8:37 am
 

South Florida deserves to be in

This team deserves to be in.  The Big East, though it is not having the best time in football right now, is still one of the three toughest basketball conferences.  It is extremely tough for a team like USF, who is full of transfers and second-level recruits, to even win four games in this league, what alone ten. 
 
To make it simple for those who have trouble understanding: any team that goes .500 or better in the Big East deserves to be in the NCAA Tournament.  The problem is that the Bulls aren't sexy enough for the media.  They don't have a bona fide star; all they do is work hard, play great team ball, and play very, very good defense.  Unless you have a cute label or slogan like "Forty Minutes of Hell," doing things right isn't enough to get respect from the media.

Sadly, when it comes to the selection committee, the tail wags the dog.  The committe relies on the media to do a lot of their work for them.  For the most part, that media hasn't pronounced USF worthy of being considered alongside those they have beaten yet.  Consequently, the committee will overlook USF unless they win the conference tournament. 

The bottom line: if this school's numbers were put up blind with no name on the school, it would be in the tournament based on its Big East record.  Instead, they will probably get screwed out of a berth and have to play in the NIT.  Maybe the NCAA should skip conference tournaments and have the first two rounds of an expanded, all-inclusive NCAA Tournament during Conference Tournament Weekend. 
If they can't get it right, then just let everyone in and let what happens on the floor dictate who deserves to be in the round of 64 the following week. 



Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: February 22, 2012 1:21 am
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

.....and if they weren't in the Big East this article wouldn't have been written.  They've largely gotten their 10 wins against the bottom of the barrel in the Big East.  I know it's not their fault the way the schedule worked out, but they've had opportunities against quality opponents and failed each time, and in most cases they got blown out.  Too bad about the injuries, but most quality teams find a way to compensate. Losing to VCU by 24, and losing to Penn State & ODU, and not winning a single road game out of conference do not a tournament team make. 



Since: Aug 20, 2007
Posted on: February 21, 2012 9:33 pm
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

if we win three of our final four (or maybe even two of four) we should be in.



Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: February 21, 2012 9:13 pm
 

South Florida: The truth and lies of the Bulls

What conversation do they think they should be in?  Their RPI is 50.  Their proving ground is squarely in front of them.  You get into the conversation the same way for any team, during any year: by beating people.

Oh, and about that name on the front of the jersey: Syracuse got left out of the tourney with almost exactly the same RPI in '07.  Their fans howled, but in the end the point it comes back to is the same.  Beating people is how you get in. 


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com