No, these aren’t everyone’s favorite awards – the ones that honor the superstars of the stage. It’s an end-of-semester tribute to the best (and worst) of USF athletics. Please hold all of your applause until the end.
Weirdest stat: The volleyball team’s three-out-of-four total wins coming on the 16th of every month. I’m sure it felt like the planets had to be in alignment for them to pull out a win this season, but not Galileo or even the ancient Egyptians could offer a solution for this.
Runner-up: Starting wide receiver Amarri Jackson led the team in receiving yards, but none of his four touchdowns were receiving. Weird.
Worst play: Is there any doubt what this one is? I’ll give you two numbers: four and six. I think even the Statue of Liberty or the Annexation of Puerto Rico could have worked better. Somewhere after that play against Connecticut, Bear Bryant tossed restlessly in his grave.
Runner-up: I’ll second the Connecticut play, it was that bad.
Best team: The men’s soccer team was one foot away from going to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament, and by losing only one player from this season’s squad, it has the most potential for next season.
Runner-up: Football. Its “first bowl game ever” can now be added to the words “trailers” and “nine-year-old program” when referring to South Florida.
Best Athlete: Jordan Seabrook. The freshman forward on the men’s soccer team stepped in to replace an injured Hunter West and led the team in points (36) for the season. Seabrook’s 14 goals were the best since West – in his freshman year – had the same amount in 2002. But one more athlete deserves to share this award.
Co-Best Athlete: Andre Hall. The senior running back was recently named to the Big East conference first team and – in only two years – broke almost every rushing record at USF.
Coach of the Year: Jim Leavitt. I would give this to George Kiefer, the men’s soccer coach, but when a coach goes 6-5 and gets a seven-year contract extension, he must be worth it.
Runner-up: George Kiefer. Coach of the Year is Kiefer’s to win next season. Let’s see if he can handle the hype. Speaking of hype-
Biggest bust: Courtney Denson. The much ballyhooed transfer from Auburn started the season competing for the No. 1 spot at quarterback but fumbled his way to No. 6 on the receiving depth chart and registered zero catches for the season. Public Enemy was right.
Runner-up: Volleyball. Four wins and the worst record ever in the history of the sport at USF.
Play of the Year: Amarri Jackson’s crazy-mixed-up-super-fantastic fumble-reverse touchdown against Cincinnati.
Runner-up: Harrison Ford is looking everywhere for Johnny “The Fugitive” Peyton after his one-armed circus grab against Rutgers.
Game of the Year: “45-14.” I can’t even think of a bigger upset win in the history of college football, much less USF sports. This win literally put South Florida on the map.
Runner-up: Women’s basketball’s Wednesday 79-77 overtime victory over No. 11 DePaul. DePaul was the highest ranked team that has ever fallen to any men’s or women’s team in the history of USF basketball.
Embarrassing fan moment: Random Bulls fans relentlessly heckling Tennessee-Martin in women’s basketball route of the lowly Skyhawks, 83-58 on Nov. 27. I’m sure they were just happy to be playing Division-I basketball but were barraged with insults and berated throughout the blowout win. I know fans are a part of the game, but know your role.
Runner-up: Sept. 24 – Taser night. The Tampa Sports Authority gladly accepts this award on the fans’ behalf.
Best name(s): With apologizes to West Virginia defensive end Johnny Dingle, the USF men’s soccer team’s names are (Kris) Raad. They have the monikers that other teams go Ga(rrett)-Gaa for. No other person or team can (Chris) Swindle this award.
Runners-up: Senior sailing team member Jee Lee and the foulest forecaster: Bulls basketball player Roodly Prophete.