Veteran presence allows USF secondary to succeed
Despite a roller-coaster season for the USF football team, one consistency has been the play of its defensive secondary, the cornerbacks and safeties, when they are healthy.
The skill in the teams veteran secondary positions was most evident in USFs performance in its 30-17 loss to the Seminoles. Led by senior Kayvon Webster, who was named to the Big East honor roll for a 12-tackle performance, the Bulls limited the FSU offense to 182 rushing yards and 242 passing yards, 79 and 41 yards below their respective season averages.
Though the secondary has not been able to get its first interception of the season one of only two teams, along with Wisconsin, still searching for an interception defensive coordinator Chris Cosh said the Bulls impacted the defenses ability to generate pressure.
(EJ) Manuel was patting the ball a couple of times which says the coverage on the underneath stuff was pretty good, he said. Sometimes the sacks are caused by good coverage and taking away his first look.
At first glance, a secondary that allowed 61 combined points and 515 yards through the air to Nevada and Ball State is hardly deserving of praise.
But coach Skip Holtz said injuries and shifting of personnel played a big role in the inconsistencies of the defense.
It was frustrating because we werent getting the continuity that we wanted, he said. We didnt have (Webster) a week ago, and so we had to play a lot of freshmen with (Ken) Durden and (Chris) Bivins. Having him back and having him and George Baker, both upperclassmen holding it down has been big.
With seniors Webster and Baker and juniors Mark Joyce and JaQuez Jenkins starting in the secondary, along with senior Jon Lejiste coming off the bench, USF has the luxury of five upperclassmen playing
a majority of the teams defensive plays.
Holtz said despite a leg injury for Lejiste against Florida State, the depth of the secondary is encouraging.
Even when Lejiste got hurt, we were able to have Jenkins and Joyce at the safeties to play, and it gave us the consistency we were looking for back there, he said. You always make a big deal about playing with upperclassman, so to have two senior corners and two junior safeties helps our production.
Junior defensive end Ryne Giddins said hes seen aggression from the secondary in practices that translates well to game day something that the Bulls will need as they re-enter conference play with five straight Big East games on the horizon.
Its the little things that theyve been working on in practice, he said. They compete for the ball and try to prevent our guys from catching the ball. I think the work in practice is helping them in the game, as we saw last week.
As for the interception drought, Cosh said he wont be avoiding the topic in practices in fear of a jinx.
Im still going to talk about it and emphasize it, he said. Those guys are talking about it in practice all the time too. When we get our first one, its going to be a party, I can tell you that.
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
- Quinton Flowers wins AAC Offensive Player of the Year
- BOT formally approves Genshaft bonus
- Top 10 moments of the fall semester
- Netflix: No Wi-Fi needed
- USF Health Services sees spike in clients as exams near
- USF System President Genshaft up for performance-based stipend
- USF students reflect on fall semester
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Yes, Olivia, There Is a Santa, and He's Calling You
- Got Tech Neck? Here's Some Advice.
- Three Simple Swaps for a Healthier Lunch
- Epilepsy Awareness Day 2016 Largest Turnout Ever
- Give the Gift of Connectivity, Without the Stress
- New Cancer Treatment Continues to Progress By Filing for...
- How Many Years Does it Take to Become a Doctor of...
- Many Working Mothers Can't Afford Their Health Insurance...
- A Date with Destiny: Video Games Teach Kids Life Lessons
- The Magic Number for Millennials: $51,000
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- PEPSICO AND 21ST CENTURY FOX ANNOUNCE "THE SEARCH FOR HIDDEN FIGURES"
- The Most Popular Entry-Level Jobs and Companies for College Graduates
- National Meningitis Association Urges Students to take Pledge2Prevent
- American Cancer Society and CVS Health Foundation Award Grants to Help 20 Colleges and Universities Go Tobacco-Free in Largest Initiative of Its Kind
- BPU Offers Sentiment Analysis Free to Universities