Men’s basketball team loses another guard

USF starting freshman point guard Chris Howard will miss the entire season after tearing his left ACL during practice Tuesday.

“It’s a huge loss,” coach Robert McCullum said Wednesday.

The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Howard, 19, will redshirt this season and will have four years of eligibility left.

While McCullum didn’t name a new starter, he said sophomore Collin Dennis and junior Chris Capko will split ball-handling responsibilities.

McCullum said Howard injured his knee during a defensive drill when he bumped into a teammate, lost his balance and fell to the floor.

“We are very disappointed about the loss of Chris,” McCullum said. “The knowledge and the confidence his teammates have in him are special for a freshman.”

Howard is the second guard the Bulls lost before their first game this season. USF dismissed junior transfer David Sills last week for behavior detrimental to the program.

Also announced was the signing of Princeton “Dante” Curry to a National Letter of IntentCurry, a 6-foot-4, 175-pound guard, will join the team for the 2006-07 season.

“We are extremely happy to add Dante to our program,” McCullum said in a press release. “He is a player we targeted two years ago and have had the opportunity to evaluate and observe him in numerous situations.”

Curry is entering his senior year at Kissimmee Poinciana High School and was a first-team all-county selection by the Orlando Sentinel as a junior, when he averaged 19.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game.

Mike Camunas contributed to this report.