BULLS DOWN THE YELLOW JACKETS IN A STATEMENT WIN

by Kevin Erlendsson

TAMPA – The Bulls completed a fourth-quarter comeback over Georgia Tech, outscoring the Yellow Jackets 21-7 in the final frame en route to a 49-38 victory.

USF quarterback Blake Barnett completed 21 of 31 pass attempts for 202 yards and two touchdowns while throwing one interception. He added 91 yards on 16 rushes and two more touchdowns.

“I just wanna do what I can to help this team” Barnett said.

The Bulls struggled to stop Georgia Tech’s triple option offense for much of the game, allowing a total of 602 yards, 419 of which were on the ground. Yellow Jackets quarterback Taquon Marshall led the way with 113 yards and a touchdown before coming out of the game early in the second half. His replacement, back-up quarterback Tobias Oliver, was just as prolific, accruing 97 yards on the ground and crossing the goal line on three straight drives.

It looked like it would be a long afternoon for the Bulls early in the game when defensive back Tariq Carpenter intercepted Barnett on the opening drive. That turnover set up a field goal and an early lead for Georgia Tech. Freshman Terrance Horne delivered a response on the ensuing kickoff, sprinting 98 yards virtually untouched for the score.

Marshall quickly answered for Georgia Tech, scoring on a 45-yard run to make it 10-7. But once again Horne stepped up for the Bulls, bouncing outside and blowing by three defenders while returning the kickoff 99-yards to give his team the lead back.

The teams traded scores and USF went into half-time up 21-17.

Georgia Tech received the kickoff and would score on its first three drives of the second half, all runs by Oliver. USF was able to score once – a 14-yard run by redshirt-freshman Duran Bell Jr. – but the Bulls were staring at a 38-28 deficit with just 14:15 to play and the defense looked incapable of slowing down the Yellow Jackets rushing attack.

Barnett led the Bulls for a quick score on the ensuing drive, capped off by a Horne touchdown catch, his third score of the day, to bring USF within three. But the Georgia Tech continued to roll, led by Marshall who had returned from his injury. After converting on a crucial 3rd and 9, the Yellow Jackets were threatening once again inside the redzone, and with only about eight minutes left, the Bulls needed a stop.

They got that stop in the form of a turnover, a fumble forced by redshirt-freshman Bentlee Sanders and recovered by linebacker Nico Sawtelle. USF cashed in on the takeaway, marching downfield and taking the lead on a 19-yard run by Barnett. The Bulls were up 42-38 with 5:08 left in the game, but they were going to need another stop from their defense.

“That takeaway changed the momentum of the game” Barnett said.

Once again, USF’s D stepped up. Kirk Livingstone pressured Marshall on a 3rd and 20, hitting him as he threw and forcing an errant pass that was easily intercepted by Sawtelle, his second takeaway. Barnett scored his fourth touchdown of the game to cap off the comeback.

“They have a dynamic offense” Sawtelle said. “We need to come together as team unit, break them down and stop them. And we did.”

The Bulls improve to 2-0 and will travel to Chicago on Friday and take on Illinois in their first road game of the season.

 

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Bulls Radio boasts a large repertoire of unique programming because of its contributors – the talented staff and volunteers that hold complete creative control of Bulls Radio. Our constant stream of unique programming reaches listeners from each USF campus, all over Tampa Bay, and even around the world!

Tune in to 1620 AM on campus or 89.7 HD3 Tampa, or stream us worldwide at bullsradio.org .Thank you for being a valued listener!

Georgia Tech vs. USF Preview

By Scott Baker

The USF Bulls (1-0) get ready for a talented Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (1-0) team this weekend at Raymond James Stadium. Saturday's game will be the first time that these two teams have met, but not the first time that Georgia Tech will play at Raymond James. In 2009, the Yellow Jackets played Clemson in the ACC conference championship. Georgia Tech won the game over the Tigers 39-34 but later had to vacate the win due to NCAA sanctions. USF is hoping to start this series with a win as the teams will meet this year as well as next year. But looking ahead to Saturday, this is how the game will break down.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Georgia Tech got their season started in week one with a shutout victory over FCS Alcorn State 41-0. Georgia Tech using their triple option offense ran the ball for 439 yards in the opening game. In the running game, Georgia Tech had 12 different players with rushing attempts against Alcorn St. Through the air, Georgia Tech quarterback TaQuon Marshall had just 18 passing attempts and nine completions for 104 yards and one touchdown. Marshall, a senior, has just under 1,500 yards rushing in his career at Georgia Tech and has scored 19 touchdowns since wearing the uniform. Marshall in his junior year broke the school record for rushing yards by a quarterback with 1,146 yards in just 11 games which was also good for 12th overall in a single-season. His 17 touchdowns in 2017 on the ground are the third-most ever by a Georgia Tech quarterback in a single-season. Georgia Tech will look to use their ground game this weekend to defeat USF in Tampa. On the other side of the ball for the Georgia Tech, look for redshirt junior linebacker David Curry to take the lead. Curry was tied for the team-high with four tackles as well as having a fumble recovery that was returned for 15 yards. The Georgia Tech defense gave up just 146 yards of total offense a week ago, which is the fewest yards they have given up since surrendering 132 yards in a win over Duke in 2007. Nate Woody took over the defense this year after Ted Roof left and took the assistant head coach and defensive coordinator job at North Carolina State in the offseason.  The Georgia Tech defense last year was 63rd overall in total defense under Roof. The team gave up 354.3 yards per game a season ago allowing the opposing offense to gain 5.5 yards per play. Georgia Tech also allowed teams to run around 64 plays per game.  Georgia Tech gave up 200.6 yards through the air a season ago and 153.6 on the ground, allowing just one and a half touchdowns per game in both categories. Look for the Georgia Tech defense to try and stop the USF run.

USF Bulls

Just like Georgia Tech, USF is coming off a win against an FCS opponent. USF was able to defeat Elon 34-14. USF is in their second year under Offensive Coordinator Sterling Gilbert. With the tools that Gilbert has on the offense this season, the team has already looked very different than a year ago. In the opening week against Elon, junior quarterback Blake Barnett lit up the Elon secondary, throwing for 305 yards for three touchdowns and carried the ball for 31 yards and a touchdown. The four touchdowns that Barnett accounted for is the most ever by a USF quarterback in their debut. Also impressive for USF on the offensive side of the ball was redshirt freshman Randall St. Felix who made seven catches for 143 yards and a touchdown, which put him as the best debut for a USF wide receiver, and already puts him into ninth in program history. On the defensive side of the ball, USF was able to suffocate the Elon offense in the first half, not allowing a score. Three USF players had ten or more tackles, with Jaymon Thomas and Khalid McGee leading the team with 11 tackles. Thomas also led the team with seven tackles for loss. The USF defense also racked up three sacks and 12 tackles for loss. The USF secondary left off where they were last season creating two interceptions on the day where they should have had three. The defense gave up a total of 234 yards to Elon, with 192 of those coming on the ground. USF against the Georgia Tech triple option should look to be tighter as a unit against the run this weekend if they want to stay competitive in the game.

 

USF and Georgia Tech will become familiar opponents after the game this week as the two teams are scheduled to play one another again in the 2019 season in Atlanta. Looking at Saturday's contest, it will be a close game that will be won at the line of scrimmage. If USF can score early and slow the Georgia Tech running game, it could be a long, hot afternoon for the Georgia Tech faithful. For Georgia Tech, if they can clog the passing lanes and force USF to run the ball, they could take the game with relative ease. Georgia Tech with their style of offense can keep the ball for long stretches of time and tire out the defense.

Tyler McConnell and Scott Baker will have the call on Bulls Radio starting at 11:45 a.m. with a pregame show from Raymond James Stadium.

Bulls Radio

Welcome to Bulls Radio, Florida’s No. 1 College Radio Station!

Bulls Radio boasts a large repertoire of unique programming because of its contributors – the talented staff and volunteers that hold complete creative control of Bulls Radio. Our constant stream of unique programming reaches listeners from each USF campus, all over Tampa Bay, and even around the world!

Tune in to 1620 AM on campus or 89.7 HD3 Tampa, or stream us worldwide at bullsradio.org .Thank you for being a valued listener!