The University of South Florida’s football team has seen some tremendous growth this season.
After starting the season ranked 19th in the country, they fell to 22nd earlier this season. That was due to a mixture of bad luck and shaky performances in their first few games. Earlier this season, the Bulls trailed at the half to both San José State and Stony Brook University. Yes the team would respond in the second half to win both games, but with the team’s expectations so high this season it meant slow starts like those would cause problems for them in the rankings.
The Bulls seem to have righted the ship now though. After dealing with the fallout from Hurricane Irma, the Bulls have pulled off four straight dominant performances – outscoring their opponents 184-64 to stay 6-0 this season and remaining one of only eight teams without a loss so far.
The Bulls extended their nation-leading streak of games scoring 30-plus points to 23 on Saturday, equaling the longest streak on record since 1936 (23 by Oregon in 2011-12).
USF scored two rushing touchdowns for the 23rd straight game on Saturday and continue to rank in the top 10 in the nation in both rushing offense and defense. The Bulls rank third nationally allowing just 77.8 rushing yards per game and eighth running for 293 yards per game.
The USF defense has collected at least two turnovers in every game this season and the Bulls continue to lead the nation with 15 interceptions on the year after senior linebacker Auggie Sanchez returned an interception 65 yards for a touchdown Saturday, marking his second straight game with an interception return for a touchdown. USF’s 18 turnovers gained on the year rank second nationally and the Bulls stand 12th in the nation in total defense allowing just 290.3 yards per game.
All of this has added up to slot USF in at number 16 in the AP poll, and number 13 in the Coach’s Poll. This is the highest the Bulls have been ranked since being ranked number 10 in both the AP and Coaches polls in Week 5 of the 2008 season.
The Bulls will be looking to extend their record setting, and NCAA best, win streak to 12 games when they travel to New Orleans to take on the 3-3 Tulane Green Wave on Sat. Oct 21 at 7 p.m.