USF at Auburn: Game Day

USF looks to make it 2-0 when the face Auburn at Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday. Take a look at the complete game day breakdown of the USF Bulls vs the Auburn Tigers when they meet at 9:00 p.m. this Saturday. Only on! Get it First, Get it Fast

USF Game Day

South Florida at Auburn

Date: Saturday, Sept. 8, 2007
Location: Auburn, Ala.
Kickoff: 8 p.m. Central (Auburn) / 9 p.m. Eastern (Tampa)
Radio: WFLA 970 AM (Tampa), ESPN Radio
Stadium: Jordan Hare-Stadium Capacity,  87,451, Surface: Natural

The Series
When the Bulls face the Tigers at Jordan-Hare Stadium this Saturday it will be the first meeting between both schools.  USF is 0-4 all-time against SEC teams. The Bulls are coming off a 28-13 win over Elon, while the Tigers came from behind to defeat Kansas State 23-13 in the opening week of the 2007 college football season.

The Coaches
USF: Jim Leavitt (11th season) -Has a career record of 71-43 at USF.
Auburn:  Tommy Tuberville
  (9th season) - Has a career record of 97-69 and is 72-29 at Auburn.

Last Season: USF Bulls 9-4 - Auburn Tigers 11-2
This Season: USF Bulls 1-0 - Auburn Tigers 1-0

USF Bulls:
Finished 4-3 in the BIG EAST conference in 2006
Auburn Tigers:
Finished 6-2 in the SEC West in 2006

National Rankings
18th AP/14th USA Today/
South Florida: Received  votes in AP/ 26 votes USA Today

Last Game Played USF:
The Bulls are coming off a 28-13 win over Elon, and only allowed 259 total yards in their season opener.

Recapping Elon

  • The win was the 50th home victory in USF history, they are 11-0 in home openers.
  •  True freshman Mike Ford had one of the most memorable rookie debuts in 11 years of USF football. Scoring three TDs, two rushing and one receiving, and also had an electrifying 48-yard run before his final score. He rushed for 83 yards on only six carries, an average of 13.8 per carry. He  scored from the one yard (receiving), 22 yards (rushing) and one yard (rushing).
  • Matt Grothe was solid going 23-for-39 for 238 yards and two TDs. His 39 pass attempts are a career high.
  • WR Taurus Johnson led the team with six receptions for 59 yards
  • Amarri Jackson reeled in a 24-yard catch for the fourth TD of the game.
  • Sophomore DE George Selvie broke his own USF record with six tackles for loss. Selvie also tied the USF record for sacks in a game with four.
  • USF had six total sacks, with Richard Clebert and Aaron Harris adding to Selvie's total of four.
  • All-America candidate Mike Jenkins collected two pass breakups.
  • Redshirt-freshman Carlton Mitchell had four receptions for 32 yards in his first collegiate action
  • FS Nate Allen reeled in his first career interception in first career start.
  • Clebert blocked a 50-yard field goal by Elon.
  •  K Delbert Alvarado was perfect 4-4 on PATs. He did not attempt any field goals.
  • Senior WR Courtney Denson had two catches, which is one more than he had in his career prior to the game
  • USF is 11-0 in home openers and 7-4 in season openers
  • Starting center Nick Capogna injured his knee early and did not play in the second half. Starting right tackle Walter Walker was limited due to hydration issues .

How they match-up

South Florida Bulls Rankings
Rush Yds/Gm 135.0(66th)
Pass Yds/Gm 238.0(42nd)
Total Yds/Gm 373.0(62nd)
Average Pts/Gm 28.0(62nd)
Rush Yds/Gm 33.0(18th)
Pass Yds/Gm 226.0(77th)
Total Yds/Gm 259.0(35th)
Auburn Tigers Rankings
Rush Yds/Gm 62.0(94th)
Pass Yds/Gm 229.0(48th)
Total Yds/Gm 291.0(84th)
Average Pts/Gm 23.0(84th)
Rush Yds/Gm 27.0(14th)
Pass Yds/Gm 289.0(99th)
Total Yds/Gm 316.0(59th)

Season Stats

M Grothe 59.0 238 2 0
M Ford 6 83 13.8 2
B Williams 10 35 3.5 0
M Grothe 8 22 2.8 0
A Jackson 4 63 15.8 1
T Johnson 6 59 9.8 0
C Denson 2 35 17.5 0
C Mitchell 4 32 8.0 0
B Williams 2 20 10.0 0
D Alvarado 0 4   4
Kick Returns
B Williams 1 11 11.0 0
T Williams 1 0 0.0 0
B Cox 56.7 229 1 2
B Tate 23 82 3.6 0
C Stewart 5 7 1.4 0
B Cox 8 -20 -2.5 0
P Rodriguez 6 73 12.2 0
R Smith 1 55 55.0 0
G McKenzie 4 42 10.5 1
B Tate 2 23 11.5 0
J Swinton 1 16 16.0 0
W Byrum 3 2 39 11
Kick Returns
P Lee 3 63 21.0 0
M Fannin 1 15 15.0 0


 USF Projected Depth Chart: Auburn



First Team

Second Team

QB 08 Matt Grothe (So., 6-0, 213) 15 Grant Gregory (Jr., 6-1, 205)
RB 01 Benjamin Williams (JR., 5-7, 200) 26 Mike Ford (Fr. 6'2-225)
RB2 20 Aston Samuels (Fr. 5'10-176) 33 Jamar Taylor (Fr. 5'10-200)
X 18 Amarri Jackson (Sr., 6-5, 202) 83 Carlton Mitchell (Fr. 6'4-200)
H 87 Jessie Hester Jr. (So, 6'0-174) 07 Courtney Denson (Sr. 5'11-190)
Y 89 Taurus Johnson (Jr., 6-1, 204) 81 Dontavia Bogan (Fr. 6'1-185)
Z 11 Marcus Edwards (Jr., 5-11, 164) 06 Edner Alcin (Fr. 6'1-174)
LT 78 Marc Dile (Jr., 6-4, 310)  64 Jacob Sims (Fr. 6'4-270)
LG 65 Ryan Schmidt (Jr., 6-5, 327) 55 Jeremiah Warren (Fr. 6'4-320)
OC 77 Jacob Griffin (Jr. 6'4-307) 62 Sampson Genus (Fr. 6'1-308)
RG 61 Zach Hermann (Fr. 6'3-313) 55 Jeremiah Warren (Fr. 6'4-326)
RT 75 Walter Walker (Sr., 6-5, 333)  70 Jared Carnes (Jr., 6-7, 306)
TE 09 Cedric Hill (Jr., 6-3, 230)  82 Ben Busbee (So. 6'3-242)



First Team

Second Team

LE 90 Jarriett Buie (Sr., 6-3,249) 96 Woody George (Sr. 6'3-237)
NT 76 Richard Clebert (Sr., 6'1, 313) 94 Allen Cray (Sr., 6-0, 266)
DT 50 Aaron Harris (Fr. 6'3, 265) 47 Brandon Peguese (Fr. 6'1-241)
RE 95 George Selvie (So., 6-4, 242) 48 Josh Smiley (Fr. 6'3-230)
SAM 27 Tyrone McKenzie (JR. 6'2-235) 43 Sabbath Joseph (Fr. 6'0-221)
MIKE 59 Ben Moffitt (Sr. 6-2, 245) 56 Sam Miller (Sr. 5-11, 210)
WILL 53 Brouce Mompremier (Jr. 6-1, 227) 55 Donte Spires (So. 6'3-225)
LC 21 Trae Williams (Sr.,5-10, 193) 26 Tyller Roberts (Jr., 6-1, 185)
RC 04 Mike Jenkins (Sr., 6-0, 200) 22 Ryan Gilliam (Sr. 5'10-175)
SS 32 Carlton Williams (Jr., 6-4, 214) 07 Louis Gachette (Jr., 6-3, 215)
FS 05 Nate Allen (So, 6'2-200) 03 Jerome Murphy (So., 6-1, 176)
NB 03 Jerome Murphy (So., 6-1, 176) 26 Tyller Roberts (Jr., 6-1, 185)


PK 24 Delbert Alvarado (Fr., 6-0, 196) 27 Justin Teachey (Jr, 5-11, 176)
KO 27 Justin Teachey (Jr, 5-11, 176) 31 William Criswell (Jr, 5'9-174)
P 27 Justin Teachey (Jr, 5-11, 176) 31 William Criswell (Jr, 5'9-174)
LS 67 Eric Setser (Fr., 6'1, 240) 68 Mike Walsh (Fr. 5'10-210)
KR 21 Trae Williams (Sr.,5-10, 193) 89 Taurus Johnson (Jr., 6-1, 190)
PR 18 Amarri Jackson (Sr., 6-5, 215)  

Closer look at USF
The USF program has an all-time record of 44-26 at the NCAA FBS level. The wining percentage of 62.9 is good enough to rank USF No. 29 among FBS schools.  The Bulls received votes in the preseason AP and Coaches polls for the first time this season. USF also garnered a No. 21 preseason ranking by the Sporting News and a No. 25 slot by Sports Illustrated. The Bulls are11-0 in home openers and  7-4 in season openers, 52-29 in night games,  40-37 on television, 0-4 against the SEC, 50-13 at home, 11-0 in home openers, 19-29 on the road,  10-6 against non-conference opponents since having a conference affiliation (2003), 61-29 vs. non-conference all-time and 3-9 vs. ranked teams. USF owns a 23-17 record in the month of September. USF has never won more than three games in September.

USF-Auburn Ties
USF senior WR Courtney Denson, who had two receptions against Elon, began his collegiate career at Auburn as a quarterback.. Denson also played at DB during his time with the Tigers. Auburn has 18 players on its roster from the state of Florida.. Startinf tight end Ben Busbee is from mobile Alabama. Tigers senior WR Prechae Rodriguez is from Tampa and attended Jefferson HS, and was recruited by USF to play basketball. USF WR receiver Jason Sherman and Auburn WR Alex Rose both attended Jacksonville's First Coast HS. Auburn freshman Craig Stevens and junior Pat Sims both attended the same Tallahassee HS - Lincoln - as Ryan Gilliam . Bull freshman LB Sabbath Joseph and Auburn freshman DL Bryant Miller both attended Miami Central HS.

At the Helm -The Bulls have five 5 new position coaches for 2007. Greg Gregory was elevated to offensive coordinator to replace Rod smith after coaching the tight ends. Graduate Assistant Larry Scott was promoted to TE coach and Graduate assistant Mike Simmonds replaces Greg Frey as offensive line coach. Mike Canales returns to the Bulls as Passing Game Coordinator & Receivers coach, replacing Lawrence Dawsey. Former Iowa State head coach Dan McCarney was brought in as Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Line coach.

2007 USF Bulls Football Coaching Staff


Jim Leavitt Head Coach 11th
Wally Burnham Associate Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator/ Linebackers 8th
Greg Gregory Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks 3rd
Dan McCarney Assistant Head Coach & Defensive Line 1st
Carl Franks Running Backs/Recruiting Coordinator 4th
Rich Rachel Cornerbacks 8th
Troy Douglas Safeties  2nd
Larry Scott Tight Ends 3rd
Mike Simmonds Offensive Line 2nd
Mike Canales Passing Game Coordinator & Receivers 1st
Larry Antonucci Director of Football Operations 9th

University of South Florida Bulls

Closer look at the USF Players

Sophomore QB Matt Grothe -made quite a name for himself last year en route to BIG EAST Conference Freshman of the Year honors and looks for bigger and better things this season. He began the 2007 season with 239 yards, two TDs and no picks against Elon. The gun slinger attempted 39 passes, a career high, and completed 23.. The Lakeland native threw for 2,576 yards on 202-317 passing while connecting on 15 touchdowns. He also ran for 622 yards on 178 carries and rumbled for nine TD's . For his efforts last year Grothe has been named to the Manning and Maxwell Award watch lists.

Sophomore DE George Selvie -began the 2007 season with a record breaking evening against Elon. Selvie leed the USF defense, which only allowed 259 total yards in their season opening defeat of Elon.  Selvie did his damage in the back field with six tackles for loss and four sacks.  On his own, he set the Phoenix back 25 yards.  He also forced a fumble and recorded10 tackles.  His TFL total is new USF record, while his sack total ties a USF record.  He has twice as many sacks as any other FBS player. Selvie broke his own single game record for tackles for loss with six against the Phoenix .Below is the new single game record chart for TFL.

1. George Selvie -   6 vs.  Elon, 9/1/07
2. George Selvie - 5 vs. Florida International, 9/9/06
Kawika Mitchell - 5 at Oklahoma, 9/28/02
Tim Jones - 5 at Army, 9/27/03
Craig Kobel - 5 vs. Pittsburgh, 12/4/04

Selvie also tied the USF single game record for sacks with four against Elon ... Below is who he shares the honor with :

1. George Selvie - 4 vs. Elon, 9/1/07
Shurron Pierson - 4 vs. Southern Miss, 10/12/02

Selvie's four sacks is twice as many as any other FBS player. The USF single season record for sacks is 10 by Terrence Royal (2005) and Shurron Pierson (2001). The career record for sacks is 20 by Stephen Nicholas. Selvie is just outside the top 10 with 9.5 career sacks. Selvie had 5.5 sacks as a freshman last season.. He was named a freshman All-American by The Sporting News.

Senior LB Ben Moffitt -is the lone returnee out of USF's stellar trio of linebackers from last season. He began the 2007 campaign with 10 tackles, eight assisted, one tackle for loss and one pass breakup. During the 2006 campaign, Moffitt teamed up with Stephen Nicholas – now with the NFL's Atlanta Falcons – and Patrick St. Louis, who is one of the Bulls' strength and conditioning coaches. Last year Moffitt led the team in tackles with 112 and was third in tackles for a loss with 11 including four sacks ... During the summer Moffitt was named to the Bronko Nagurski Award and Butkus watch lists.

True Freshmen Mike Ford -the Sarasota native and Florida high school football legend made the most of his first collegiate action in the season opener against Elon ... The true-freshman scored three TDs, two rushing and one receiving . He had runs of 21 and 48 yards, which accounted for the large chunk of his 83 yards on six carries. His receiving TD came from one yard out. His rushing TDs were from 21 yards and 1 yard.  ESPN college basketball commentator Dick Vitale, who lives in Sarasota, put himself among the Ford backers after watching him in person in high school and hearing about his production in the opener.

Senior defensive backs Trae Williams and Mike Jenkins -Are among the best CB Tandem in the nation, and one of the potential strengths of this years USF football team. One of the most experienced DB combos in college football, the two combined for 60 career starts over their careers. Both posted impressive numbers in the season opener. Williams had five tackles, one for a loss and a pass breakup. While Mike Jenkins had four pass breakups, to tie a career high. Last season the two also teamed up for eight interceptions, seven of which belonged to Williams, tying a single season school record (with J.R. Reed). His seven picks also led the BIG EAST. The duo has been sited as the best in the BIG EAST and the state of Florida by several outlets, including expert Mark Sclabach.

Redshirt-freshman Carlton Mitchell -it's time to make his own name in a circle of family and friends that is full of standouts.Mitchell's mother, Angela, is the cut "man" for professional boxer Antonio Tarver.  The cut man position is a male dominated occupation and Angela is considered a pioneer in the sport of boxing.Tarver and Carlton have been close friends since the Bull wide receiver was 12. He is also close friends with Tarver's son, Antonio Jr..  Antonio Jr. is  a freshman point guard at Daytona Beach Community College.Carlton's father, Carl, is 6 feet 8 and played pro basketball in Europe for 12 years.  His half-brother, Carl Jr., is 6-10 and playing professionally in the Dominican Replublic.In his first collegiate game, Mitchell had four catches for 32 yards against Elon.
First time starters

Redshirt freshman OG Zach Hermann -After shining in the spring and the preseason, he received the first start of his career against Elon in the home opener.
Sophomore TE Ben Busbee
earned his first career start against Elon
Junior LB Brouce Mompremier -8 Tackles in his first career start
Sophomore FS Nate Allen -intercepted a pass deep in the Bulls territory to stop a possible score.

Other redshirt rookies: WR Carlton Mitchell, WR Ednir Alcin, DE Brandon Pequese, DE Joshua Smiley and LB Sabbath Joseph are listed at the second spot at their respective positions.

Fresh Faces
There are five true freshmen listed as the top backups on the two-deep roster for Elon.  OL Sampson Genus, OL Jeremiah Warren, RB Mike Ford, WR Dontavia Bogan and LS Mike Walsh.

On the Shelf
Senior center Nick Capogna -will likely have his consecutive start streak of 14 snapped on Saturday. He is expected to be sidelined with a knee injury. Jack Griffin will slide over to center, while Ryan Schmidt will move up the depth chart and probably start at left guard

Sophomore OT Danny Tolley -after saying in camp that he was going to call it career, sophomore OT Danny Tolley has decided to return to the team.  Tolley has battled a severe groin injury and a great deal of pain that accompanied the injury.  Tolley played in 11 games in 2006. On the subject, Coach Leavitt has said, "He is showing great courage."

Junior OG Matt Huners -suffered an ACL tear during spring practice and will be out for a large chunk of the season.  It is possible that Huners will return this season.  Huners started 10 of 11 games at guard last season.

Sophomore WR Colby Erskin -who impressed by running the 40 yard dash in under 4.4 seconds, will likely be out for the entire 2007 season.  Erskin torn an ACL during preseason camp. Erskin worked as a running back last season, collecting nine yards on six carries.  He also had five catches for 73 yards.  Erskin was making noise at the receiving position and would have challenge for playing time this fall.

WR Courtney Denson -has already earned a BA in communications from USF.  What makes his graduation even more impressive is that he transferred from Auburn, but didn't allow the change of scenery to slow his academic pursuits.

USF Honors Dorsey & Camon -The 2007 USF Bulls have two stickers, bearing the initials "JC" and "KD," for former Bulls defensive back Javan Camon, who died after a collision in an indoor football game in February, and Keeley Dorsey, the freshman running back who collapsed and died during a team conditioning workout in January. 

Up next for the Bulls -After the road trip to Auburn, the Bulls have a bye week then face North Carolina at home on Sept. 22nd, followed by a BIG EAST showdown against West Virginia at Raymond James Stadium on Sept. 28th.

USF at Auburn: Scouting the Tiger's Defense Premium Story - Take a look at the Tiger's defense when the Bulls play at Auburn this Saturday
USF at Auburn: Breaking Down Auburn's Offense Premium Story - Take an inside look at the Tiger's offense when the Bulls play at Auburn this Saturday
Current Recruiting Battles: USF vs. Auburn Premium Story - Findout what prospects are looking at both Auburn and South Florida.
USFNation Q & A with Bulls WR T.J. Johnson Premium Story - Find out what the Bulls expolsive receiver has to say about the Elon game and going into Auburn
Leavitt Bullish On Winning at AU? Premium Story - 2007 Auburn Football
USF Football Press Conference Quotes: 9/04/07 - Coach Leavitt & USF players talk to the media at the weekly press conference. Read on for transcript

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