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USF defense building momentum

If there is a positive USF can take away from its last-second, 6-3 loss to Miami on Saturday, it’s the performance of its defense.

The Bulls kept the Hurricanes out of the end zone and limited Miami to its fewest points since playing Florida in 2008.

“We may have shut them down as well as anybody has all year but, again, we came up short,” defensive coordinator Mark Snyder said.

Senior defensive end Patrick Hampton said he wasn’t surprised by his team’s defensive effort because it has been consistent for the past few weeks.

“Well, I don’t think we were surprised, you know,” he said. “We’ve been putting up efforts like this for the past couple games, and we studied their offense, their quarterback’s drop steps, all that good stuff.”

USF’s six sacks backed up the Miami offense 49 yards. While the effort pleased all the coaches, junior defensive tackle Cory Grissom, who had one of those sacks, said the defense has to work just as hard to close out games.

“We, as a defense, have to just finish it,” he said after Saturday’s loss. “We have to go out when they have the ball and close it out. When a starting quarterback goes down, when anybody goes down, we have to put it on our backs.”

With a solid defensive effort last week, the Bulls have some momentum as they prepare for Louisville.

Snyder said Louisville freshman quarterback Teddy Bridgewater mirrors Miami quarterback Jacory Harris.

“When you look at him athletically, he’s just like the guy we just played,” he said. “I mean, they’re from the same high school. You watch the film and you think you are watching Jacory Harris play.”