Junior defensive end Emerson Morris broke his lower right leg in the third quarter. Morris, who had started the Bulls? first three games, had 10 tackles and two sacks this year.
Defensive end Derek Carter hurt his left shoulder, linebacker Mike Minus injured his ankle and defensive back Javan Camon twisted his left ankle. Camon returned to the game.
Mom taught him well
During Leavitt?s post-game press conference, St. Petersburg Times reporter Sharon Ginn sneezed. Leavitt stopped in mid-sentence and politely said, ?Bless you.?
Four was the magic number Saturday for the Bulls, who registered a victory in their fourth game. USF scored four touchdowns and converted all three of its fourth down conversion attempts. North Texas was 0-for-4 on fourth down conversions.
And perhaps the biggest play of the game came on, you guessed it, fourth down, when Maurice Jones gave the Bulls a 14-10 lead with a 52-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
Despite this being the Bulls? first home game against a I-A opponent, attendance was spotty. USF drew 25,156, its second lowest home-opening crowd ever. The Bulls had been averaging 31,773 in their first four home openers.
Marquel Blackwell ? Although he threw only 24 times Saturday, as opposed to his 60-plus averages, Blackwell was pivotal for the Bulls? offense.
He completed an efficient 63 percent, despite having several catchable balls dropped. Blackwell willed the Bulls to a 21-10 lead when he juked past North Texas? Walter Priestley and dove in from 2 yards out.
Blackwell?s quick kick on fourth-and-four pinned the Mean Green on their own 4-yard line, setting up the Bulls? first score.