USF football riddled with game-time decisions against Louisville

Defensive end Rashawn Yates is one of many players whose status is up in the air heading into Saturday’s game against Louisville. USF ATHLETICS PHOTO

Some USF football players are out for injury, and their state of health ahead of Saturday’s game was a constant theme for coach Jeff Scott during his Tuesday media availability. 

In the Sept. 17 loss to the Gators, the Bulls (1-2) were missing 11 players

The concern has not completely gone away as they prepare for their next matchup against Louisville. Many players on the defensive line and in the receiving core are listed as game-time decisions. However, some players returning should bring hope for South Florida heading into Saturday.

Scott announced that linebacker Brian Norris will miss the rest of the season. He suffered an undisclosed knee injury against Florida (2-1) last week. Scott was confident Norris will work hard in rehab to return in 2023.

“He’ll have surgery later this week, and we’ll miss him,” Scott said. “He’s an extremely hard worker, and I have no doubt he’ll do the work he needs to rehab and be back next year.”

On the defensive line, fifth-year defensive end Rashawn Yates is listed as probable heading into this weekend due to an undisclosed injury. Another key starter, junior defensive back Daquan Evans, is listed as a game-time decision due to a groin injury.

 Some hope for South Florida’s secondary is that junior safety Matthew Hill returned to action against Florida last week. Sophomore defensive back Christian Williams will also come back this week after missing two weeks with a hand injury.

For the offense, junior running back Kelley Joiner Jr. will be out for the next few weeks due to a broken foot injury. He has not played a game this season. Last year, he finished third on the team with 480 rushing yards.

Sophomore wide receiver Ajou Ajou is currently listed as doubtful for the Louisville (1-2) game. Ajou sat out of the Florida game due to a hip injury he sustained during warmups. He also missed USF’s Week 2 matchup against Howard due to a groin injury.

“We will see. [We will] rest him this week and see where he is. He really aggravated a groin injury that he had earlier in the summer,” Scott said. 

Another player listed for game-time decision is sophomore wide receiver Jimmy Horn Jr. Scott gave Horn Jr. limited run time against Florida while mending an ankle injury, according to USF Athletics.  

“I did not think that he was going to be able to play at all Saturday, and then he said he felt well enough to be able to go,” Scott said. “He had not practiced very much so we were really careful with what we asked him to do.”