Bucs no match for Division I-A South FloridaOctober 18, 2003
by David Shelton, CSU Sports Information
|Clint Chappell was 5-for-5 passing with a TD.|
TAMPA, FLA. - The University of South Florida, one of the nation’s up and coming Division I-A programs, flexed a little muscle at the expense of Charleston Southern’s Buccaneers on Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium. The newest members of Conference USA scored early and often en route to a 55-7 defeat of the visiting Buccaneers before a crowd of 28,365.
South Florida improves to 4-2 with the victory while the Buccaneers fall to 1-6 overall, returning home to host North Greenville next Saturday.
"We didn’t win the game but we’re learning how to play and playing against a team of this caliber, in this environment, is going to make us a better football team," said CSU head coach Jay Mills. "We’re learning what it takes to play at a high level. We made some mistakes tonight but we also did a lot of positive things. The thing I am most encouraged about is our effort and enthusiasm. This football team plays hard on every play, regardless of the score. I am very proud of them."
Poor execution in the kicking game proved to be CSU’s demise early as USF took advantage of several mistakes to score 17 first quarter points. It started on CSU’s first possession when safety Tavares Shorter, forced into punting duties due to injuries, shanked his first punt for only 10 yards. USF took over at CSU’s 30-yard line but the Bucs stiffened on defense and forced a 30-yard field goal from Santiago Gramatica with 13:02 remaining in the first quarter.
Later in the first quarter, again on a punt attempt, the snap sailed over the head of Shorter and set the Bulls up at the CSU 15-yard line. USF needed only two plays to score when DeJuan Green took it in from two yards out for a 10-0 lead with 6:24 remaining in the first quarter.
On CSU’s next possession, quarterback Collin Drafts fumbled and, after a mad scramble, USF recovered at the CSU two-yard line. Green scored on the next play for a 17-0 advantage with 5:19 remaining in the opening quarter.
Charleston Southern mounted their only serious threat of the first half over the next seven minutes, reaching the USF six-yard line with a first-and-goal. South Florida stiffened on defense, forcing CSU to attempt a field goal with 10:28 remaining in the second quarter. However, that too turned into a harrowing experience as holder Clint Chappell, expecting a delay of game penalty, stood up as the ball was snapped. South Florida recovered the botched attempt at their own 28, ending the scoring threat.
All total, five of South Florida’s six scoring drives in the first half covered less than 34 yards. The Bulls’ longest drive of 72 yards was aided by a 58-yard gain on a fake punt attempt.
The second half proved to be more of the same -- pressure from the USF defense and too much power on offense. USF needed only 1:22 to put a score up in the third quarter when Pat Julmiste connected with Joe Bain on a 53-yard bomb and a 41-0 lead with 11:46 remaining in the third. Late in the third, a 35-yard punt return by J.R. Reed put the Bulls at the CSU 15 and two plays later Clenton Crossley scored his second touchdown from nine yards out with 1:06 remaining.
Trailing, 55-0, Charleston Southern mounted their lone scoring drive of the game as Chappell hooked up with Chris Lanoue on a two-yard touchdown toss with 9:46 remaining in the game. CSU finished the contest with 134 total yards but minus 52 yards rushing due in large part to six sacks by the USF defense.
Drafts completed 14-of-31 passes for 116 yards while Chappell completed all five of his attempts for 70 yards in the fourth quarter. Charleston Southern ran 18 more offensive plays and held nearly a 17-minute advantage in time of possession.
"I thought Collin and Clint battled really hard," said Mills. "Clint’s play was positive and good to see. He’s a young man that’s working hard everyday in practice and waiting for his shot."
CSU will return home to Charleston to face next Saturday's opponent, North Greenville, on Church Youth Day. Youth and church groups of ten or more can purchase tickets for $5.00 each.Related Item: Box Score