Tough opening weekend awaits USF
Coming off a season in which the women's basketball team missed the postseason for the first time since 2002-03, the Bulls open this week with a tough stretch at the WBI Tip-Off Tournament in Daytona Beach.
The Bulls' season starts quickly, with three games in as many days against competition from the six power conferences.
First up is Florida State on Friday, followed by Arkansas on Saturday and Minnesota on Sunday. All three games tip-off at 4:30 p.m.
Coach Jose Fernandez said he likes the challenge of playing talented teams right away and gauging the ability of his team early.
"I think the level of competition is a lot different when you talk about playing Florida State, Minnesota and Arkansas back-to-back-to-back," he said. "We're going to find out how good we are early, but by no means will it be an indication of the type of season we're going to have."
A challenge for the Bulls will be the absence of leading scorer Andrea Smith, who tore her ACL in the first minute of last season's final game. She has been doing conditioning drills with the team and individual work, but has not yet been cleared for contact. Smith is Preseason All-Big East Honorable Mention.
In her absence, Fernandez said the team will have to split the load of Smith's offensive production.
"I think Kaneisha Saunders - we're going to have to get more point production from her," he said. "Andrell (Smith) can definitely be double figures. Jasmine Wynne will definitely be asked upon. Caitlin Rowe and Akila McDonald, from what we've seen in the last two weeks, will definitely be a big help."
While the lineup is fluid and likely to change once Andrea Smith and Inga Orekhova, who is suspended until January due to an NCAA ruling about her amateur status, return, Saunders is expected to pair with Andrell Smith in the backcourt, while Jasmine Wynne plays the wing and Rowe and McDonald occupy the front court.
Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly
More usforacle News Articles
Recent usforacle News Articles
Discuss This Article
MOST POPULAR USFORACLE
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER
LATEST USFORACLE NEWS
- USF football coach Willie Taggart says offensive excitement here to stay
- For USF volleyball's Dakota Hampton, winning is the only way
- Lack of warning during shooting concerns students
- USF lobbies for $22.5 million for downtown medical school
- Something’s got to give
- School, work and fun: a balancing act
- Tampa receives $2.4 million contract for transportation research
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Americans Prefer Cleaning Toilets Over Researching Health...
- Avoid Drugs and Surgery With Chiropractic Care
- Firefighter Battles Flames and Cancer
- Winter Is Coming: Is Your Fuel Ready?
- Could The Movie Studio be the Next Heavy Hitter?
- Can Insurance Companies Adapt to Today's Fast-Paced...
- Help Fund Your Favorite School Cause One Apple at a Time
- New TIPS Program Focuses on Preventing Youth Sports Injuries
- Don't Let Spooky Pests Haunt Your Home This Fall
- Weight Loss Procedure Hits a Nerve -- Literally
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- Think Your Grades Aren't Good Enough To Get into a Top-10 Business School? Think Again!
- Voto Latino to Gather Hundreds of Young Latinos for Major Summit in Silicon Valley
- October 8 is National Student Day
- KORU LAUNCHES NEW, UNIQUE JOB FINDER FOR COLLEGE GRADS
- Amazon Student Celebrates Fall with Exclusive Deals and Scholarships