Freshman Johnson leaves team

USF redshirt freshman A.J. Johnson has been granted her release from the women’s basketball program, paving the way for a transfer to another institution.

A 5-foot-10 guard/forward and the only left-handed shooter on the roster, Johnson saw limited action in seven games this season and averaged 2.0 points and 0.3 rebounds.

Johnson played in the final minutes of the Bulls’ loss to Richmond in the first-round of the Women’s National Invitation Tournament, the first postseason appearance for the Bulls in 26 years.

Johnson has been hampered by leg injuries since her senior season in high school, according to a press release from the USF sports information office. She injured her leg Dec. 4, 2002 against Jacksonville and subsequently was redshirted her first season.

Johnson, a cousin of Orlando Magic superstar Tracy McGrady, finished her USF career with 14 points in 24 minutes, which spanned 11 games.

“We wish A.J. the very best of luck in her future endeavors,” USF coach Jose Fernandez said. “A.J. is a good person and a great kid, and we hope she has a lot of success at whatever school she decides to attend. With the depth that we have in our backcourt, A.J. feels that it is best that she can go to a school where she can play right away.”

With all five starters set to return next season, Johnson probably would have had a difficult time getting onto the floor. Freshmen Rachael Sheats and Jessica Dickson, Conference USA’s reigning Freshman of the Year, occupy the two spots Johnson would likely play. The return of juniors Rae Rae Sayles and Tristen Webb from injuries next season also would have cut into Johnson’s possible minutes on the floor.

The press release did not indicate any schools Johnson was considering for a transfer.

Bulls face No. 10 Bulldogs today

The USF men’s tennis team returns to action today after an 11-day break to face No. 10 Georgia, the second Bulls opponent ranked in the top 10 this season.

The Bulls, ranked No. 38 in the nation, carry a four-match winning streak into today’s contest at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens.

USF’s last loss came to Southeastern Conference opponent and intra-state rival Florida, who lost to the Bulldogs 4-3 earlier this season. The Bulls are 2-1 this season against SEC teams, with victories against Auburn and Alabama.

USF ended Georgia’s season last year with a 4-0 victory in the first round of the NCAA Championships in Texas.