The Morning After: USF wins on a rain soaked night

Posted: September 20, 2014 in Football

The Bulls were able to beat Uconn during a monsoon, winning 17 to 14 on an ugly night to be outside. USF won it through defense, the run game, and limiting the mistakes, helping them get to 2-2 (1-0) on the year. They are 1-0 in the AAC and now have equaled the win total from last year.

The numbers show USF dominated this game and aside from one fluke play, the Bulls were in complete control. The Bulls outgained the Huskies in total yardage by 271 to 145. USF had 158 yards on the ground compared to just 58 for Uconn. The Bulls had 17 first downs compared to just 6 for Uconn. USF also held the ball for 38 minutes compared to 20 minutes for Uconn. The Huskies didn’t complete a pass until the 3rd quarter and had several 3 and short yardage situations that were pushed further back due to bad penalties.

The passing game for both sides was ugly because of the rainy conditions, but Mike White looked good on the few passes he had to make. He was 10 for 18 for 113 yards including a score and one interception. The touchdown catch to Rodney Adams was a beautiful toss and several of his throws were thrown on a rope and right to the receivers. It wasn’t pretty and some of the throws wobbled, but he did well in the monsoon. The interception was a fluke play. It was a quick sideline throw to Adams that hit him right in the numbers and popped right up in the air and right into the hands of the Uconn defender who took it back for a score. It was a catch that Adams should of had and a bad play on an overall good night for him. Adams had 4 catches for 68 yards and his first touchdown. He became the go-to with Andre Davis still on the mend. Darius Tice had 2 grabs for 16 yards, Marlon Mack had 1 for 10 and Mike McFarland and Kennard Swanson both had a reception for 6 yards a piece.

The running game got going thanks to an improved offensive play last night (Thor Jozwiak returning helped). Marlon Mack carried it 31 times for 103 yards and scored a touchdown, carrying the load again. D’Ernest Johnson had 10 carries for 41 yards. Darius Tice also had 9 rushes for 28 yards. All of the backs saw playing time and the offensive line moved the pile. The unit played awful last week and was called out by Coach Taggart during the week. It seems they got the message and moved the line of scrimmage on each play.

On special teams, everyone played well and there we no bad snaps! Kloss hit one field goal and battled the awful field conditions. Mattias Ciabatti had 6 punts, averaging 41.3 yards per kick and landed 5 inside the Uconn 20-yard line. He was able to pin them back so many times and flip the battle of the field position. Chris Dunkley had a punt return for a touchdown called back by a penalty, the second week in a row that has happened. The entire unit played well in this game and will have to continue to do this and help the offense and defense alike.

The defense played extremely well and kept the Huskies ineffective offense down the entire game. They had 8 tackles for loss and forced their 11th fumble in just the 4th game. Chris Dunkley had a sack, forced fumble and recovered the ball which led to the first touchdown of the game for USF. Jamie Byrd had 6 tackles. Nigel Harris had 5 tackles with 2 TFL. Tashon Whitehurst had 4 tackles with 1 TFL. Eric Lee had 3 tackles and 1 TFL. The entire unit swarmed to the ball, got in the backfield, and didn’t allow much of anything for the Huskies in this game.

This is a huge win for the Bulls. They are 2-2, at .500, and 1-0 in the conference. They got some confidence back, were able to put that ugly game from last week away, and got back to smiling and high-fiving after the game. This one feels great.


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