USF gives Scott a win in his opening game

by Gary Shelton on September 13, 2020

in general

Sunday, 2 a.m.

Sure, it was a layup of an opponent.

No, it won't be the way the Jeff Scott era will be judged.

On the other hand, Scott -- and USF -- are 1-0. Considering all that has affected this year's college football season, that's not bad.

USF beat The Citadel 27-6 in Scott's opening game Saturday night.

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“Really, I told our guys from Day One that, ‘Hey, this is a new beginning. It’s a new start.’ Scott said. "I felt like as a coaching staff, we came in and really set the standard. We let the guys know very clearly what the standard was gonna be, to be a part of the team. Man, I’m just so proud to see those guys go reach that and meet that…I felt like our guys were ready to play. They were focused and I was just really pleased to see them play well because they were focused all week. I really wanted them to be able to see the positives that come from that.”

“It’s a good start. We accomplished our first goal. We’re gonna enjoy this tonight. It’s definitely a game that I’ll remember for the rest of my career.”

The Bulls won the first game of the Scott era Saturday night, smothering an overmatched team from The Citadel, 27-6. The Bulls rushed for 302 yards and won going away.

The defenses shut out The Citadel for the second half.

"Coach Spencer and that defensive staff, they had a huge challenge," Scott said. "Any time you’re opening up the season with a triple-option team, that’s very difficult. I think Coach Spencer did a great job of really getting a plan together. Then our defensive players, you can’t be timid when you go play on option team, you gotta embrace it… I’m always going to have that picture in my mind of just seeing these guys playing fast and making plays sideline to sideline, laying it all out there on the line. To hold that team to two field goals is incredible and keeping them out of the end zone, that was huge.”

It gets tougher. The Bulls travel to Notre Dame for 2 p.m. game on Saturday.

Kelly Joiner rushed eight times for 87 years to lead USF's ground attack. The quarterbacks threw for only 102 yards.

It was a little early to find clues whether Scott's regime will be better than that of former coach Charlie Strong. However, the Bulls ran the ball well (despite missing three starting offensive linemen) and defensively, held The Citadel to two field goals.

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