Leavitt Candid About Ballot Picks

With the Bulls practice being cut short by lightning, USF head coach Jim Leavitt spoke about his ballot picks in the USA Today coaches poll, why he voted the Bulls No. 18, the poll going public, and more…

With the Bulls practice being cut short by lightning and torrential rains Wednesday , USF head coach Jim Leavitt said "Could we use an indoor facility? Today we could." Leavitt said he was glad they got a good one in last night and that "It's good that we have a little more time to prepare for Wofford, because they're a very good they're a very good football team. Leavitt also said there was no new news on whether freshmen Ryne Giddins, Julius Forte and RB Bradley Battle being cleared by the NCAA Clearinghouse. "We haven't heard anything yet, but we've got to hear something in the next couple of days," Leavitt said.

Part 1

Leavitt spoke about his ballot picks in the USA Today coaches poll being made public and being in a no win situation, "Usually the coaches are," said Leavitt. "If you don't vote your team up high, then your team doesn't think much of you, and I think they're a pretty good team, and I think we've got a chance to do some good things." Leavitt also said that he thinks most coaches know it's a preseason poll. "Until you play, you don't really know how good teams are, so you take an estimated guess." Leavitt said he doesn't mind that the poll is public, except for the first one, because "You really don't know.....The bottom line is what you do on the field."

Part 2

Leavitt talked about why he voted the Bulls No. 18, "I thought 'Why not?' Why shouldn't South Florida be in the hunt at 18?" Leavitt said he looked at all the different teams, and I felt ‘Like the Big East is pretty strong, probably maybe stronger than most people out there. Because I go by bowl records and nonconference games, and if you go by those I thought there should be four or five teams in the top 25. How do we know?" Leavitt also said "How could I face my team if I put them underneath anybody else until we play? If we go out and play poorly than we get what we deserve, and if we play well, than we merit what we deserve." Leavitt said he apologized to the team for not putting them up higher, "They were on me about it. They said 'Coach, 18? Come on.' I said I'm sorry, I apologize. But I like that attitude. They want to win and they expect to win. The bottom line is what you do on the field." Leavitt said all this does create buzz, and ‘If they're talking about me than they're talking about South Florida, and that's a good thing."

Part 3

What was Leavitt's reaction when he first found out it was going public? I wasn't happy at first," said Leavitt. "Nobody likes to be blindsided," said Leavitt "I wasn't real happy at first because I forgotten who I voted for, and people use it in different ways, but after about a half an hour I figured what the heck, why not…I don't have a problem with it." Leavitt also said "If my opinion is that big across the country, than that's nuts, and pretty unbelievable!" Leavitt talked about his top 25 selections are "A mixture" of how teams are right now, and how he predicts they will be at the end of the year.

Part 4

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