USF Football is eager and optimistic

Bulls welcome conference expansion and a bright future
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Posted at 12:38 PM, Oct 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-21 17:13:29-04

TAMPA, Fla. — This week, Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, North Texas, Rice, UAB, and UT-San Antonio submitted applications to join USF in the American Athletic Conference.

It's the latest shift in a conference realignment landscape that seems to change on a weekly basis. USF head football coach Jeff Scott said he doesn't pay that much attention to the changes in and around the AAC because he knows more changes are inevitable.

"Alright, that’s interesting. But if I just sit here and do this I’m gonna get dizzy looking around," Scott said while looking in all directions during his weekly news conference. "My job, and the reason I’m here and the reason our administration — all our focus is how can we improve this program?"

Scott, who's 2-13 so far, is confident the on-field results will come very soon. But part of that process includes committing to off-the-field projects like the new performance facility and beyond.

"And the chairman stands up at that and says 'We’re gonna build a stadium! We’re going to figure it out.' To me, that is the mindset of moving forward and preparing to be in a better position."

Running back Jaren Mangham transferred to USF from Colorado after last season. His 10 rushing touchdowns are tied for third in the FBS. He said he committed to the Bulls because he believes in coach Scott and his blueprint for the future.

"His vision, what he sees. Different things like that. He did so much for us players, like already," Mangham said. "Getting [the indoor practice facility]. He's doing so much. Going around passing out fliers 'Come to the game!' Trying to pack out the student section. I just appreciate that as a coach, from him. He's really, truly, a player's coach."

When it comes to motivating his players to turn the program around, Scott doesn't want them to forget where they started. He also gives them a few tips about the rules of the road.

"If you drive in your car, and I try to drive home tonight, staring in my rearview mirror, I’m going to run off the road. Yes, it’s there. We need to remember it. We need to learn from it. We need all that. It’s there. But it’s all about what’s in front."

The Bulls (1-5) host Temple (3-3) Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.