99 in 99: #87 South Florida Bulls

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Winning nine games in the Big East is reason to celebrate when you had only won 11 games in the previous four seasons combined since arriving in the conference.  Still, USF fell short of making the NCAA Tournament and lost their best player to the NBA.

The Sports Bank’s 99 team college basketball preview in 99 days continues with South Florida.  In case you have been drunker than Ronnie from Jersey Shore the past two weeks and missed it, I am ranking the 72 power conference teams and top 27 mid-majors leading right up to the opening tip of the college hoops season.  Click here if you missed teams #88-#99.

South Florida Bulls (T-9th, 9-9 in Big East, 20-13 overall)

Projected Depth Chart
C: Jarrid Famous (Sr)
PF: Augustus Gilchrist (Jr)/Toarlyn Fitzpatrick (So)
F: Ron Anderson Jr. (Jr)/Hugh Robertson (Jr)
G: Mike Burwell (So)/Shaun Noriega (So)/Jawanza Poland (So)
PG: Anthony Crater (Jr)/Lavonte Dority (Fr)/Shedrick Haynes (Jr)

Gone: G-Dominique Jones, C-Alex Rivas, G-Chris Howard, G-Mike Mercer, G-Ryan Kardok, G-Jordan Dumars (transfer-Michigan), G-Justin Leemow (transfer-North Carolina Central)

2010-2011 Outlook:
2009-2010 was a milestone season for USF.  It marked the first time since arriving to the Big East in 2005 that they did not finish with a losing conference record.  Okay, it was not a winning mark either, but it still has to be considered a success for a program that has not made the NCAA Tournament since 1992.

Stan Heath and company now face the daunting task of replacing do-it-all guard Dominique Jones who chose to not return for his senior year and instead bolt to the NBA.  With fellow guards Mike Mercer and Chris Howard graduating, the Bulls have serious questions in their backcourt.  The likely starting duo of Anthony Crater and Shaun Noriega averaged slightly more than four points per game last season.

Luckily for Heath, the Bulls should have a strong front-court featuring 6-11 Jarrid Famous who is coming off a fabulous first season at South Florida after transferring from Westchester Community College.  If Augustus Gilchrist can stay healthy, he should be an impact player along with Kansas State transfer Ron Anderson Jr.  There is not a whole lot of depth on the roster with the exception of forward Toarlyn Fitzpatrick so USF will have to find role players off the bench or it could be another major step back for the program.

Augustus Gilchrist USF

Player to Watch: Augustus Gilchrist, PF
An ankle injury limited the versatile 6-10 forward to just 18 games last season.  When he is on the floor, he brings a versatility that not many college players his height have.  Gilchrist hit 13 of his 27 three-point attempts last season so he can step out on the perimeter while also causing a mismatch inside since Famous will likely draw the biggest opposing defender.  Gilchrist has league potential and could be gone after this season if he can stay healthy an continue to improve his all-around game.

Key Non-Conference Games:
11/26 vs. BYU (South Padre Invitational)
11/27 vs. St. Mary’s/Texas Tech (South Padre Invitational)
TBD vs. Auburn

Other 99 in 99’s:
#88 Arkansas
#89 Boston College
#90 LSU
#91 Providence
#92 Michigan
#93 Oregon State
#94. Nebraska
#95. Auburn
#96. DePaul
#97. Iowa State
#98. Rutgers
#99. Iowa

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Key Non-Conference Games:

11/26 vs. BYU (South Padre Invitational)

11/27 vs. St. Mary’s/Texas Tech (South Padre Invitational)

TBD vs. Auburn

Comments

  1. paulmbanks says

    I’m loving the cheerleader pic leading off the previews trend. So I found this one for USF to ramp it up a bit

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