Spring training? No, spring football

The USF football team opens spring practice today, with USF coach Jim Leavitt looking for some players to step up in the next month to challenge for a few voids on the squad.

The Bulls’ most notable vacancy is at quarterback, though the team will have several to work with.

Headlining the race is redshirt freshman Pat Julmiste, who came on midseason to replace junior Ronnie Banks.

Julmiste may be able to improve his chances of becoming the team’s starter in 2004, especially with Banks being limited in spring drills after undergoing knee surgery after last season.

The Bulls are scheduled for 12 practices and two scrimmages. The spring game is April 10 at Raymond James Stadium.

All-American Bull

A seventh-place showing in the weight throw at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field championships Friday earned Dayana Octavien, a senior, the most prestigious honor in college athletics. This is Octavien’s first time as an All-American and the fourth USF recipient of it in coach Greg Thiel’s three years.

As an assistant with cross country and track and field, Thiel coached eight All-Americans from 1990-2001.

“Dayana is arguably the best athlete that we have ever had in our program, and I am just very happy for her,” Thiel said.

At 69 feet, 7 inches, Octavien slipped 2 1/2 inches from her school and conference record set Feb. 27 at the C-USA indoor meet.

Also competing in Arkansas at the NCAAs was junior Alexis McGaffagan, who placed 15th in the pentathlon.

Golf results

The USF women’s golf team is in eighth place in the 15-team Waterlefe Invitational after 36 holes Monday. The Bulls have a two-round 626 and stand 19 shots behind leader Miami.

USF is led by freshman Kylene Pulley, who is in 18th place with a 154.

The USF men’s golf team is in ninth place among 14 teams after 36 of the 54 holes at the Palmetto Intercollegiate in Aiken, S.C. USF is 35 shots back of leader South Carolina.

The Bulls are led by Oscar Fraustro, who is tied for 28th.

Staff report