Takeaways: Injured USF falls to Tulane

Sophomore quarterback Katravis Marsh (12) had to step in for junior Gerry Bohanon in the second quarter after he injured his shoulder. ORACLE PHOTO/ALEXANDRA URBAN

For the third consecutive year, USF was defeated in its Homecoming game. However, if it weren’t for junior quarterback Gerry Bohanon’s second quarter shoulder injury, the Bulls may have been able to get a win.

South Florida (1-6, 0-3) football fell 45-31 to Tulane (6-1, 3-0) on Saturday. Coach Jeff Scott said it looked like the Bulls had a chance to beat the Green Wave when they tied the game in the third quarter.

“Tulane … completely outplayed us,” he said. “Really disappointed in [our performance] in the last quarter and a half.”

The Bulls’ downfall began with Bohanon’s injury, who left during the second quarter after falling on his shoulder, prompting second-string sophomore quarterback Katravis Marsh to step in. This allowed Tulane to ultimately take the win after short scoring drives in the fourth quarter.

Boyles leadership shows through defense

Despite the loss, USF’s defense stood out against Tulane, completing 79 tackles and four sacks.

Senior linebacker Dwayne Boyles led the defense in one of his best games. Posting his career best of 15 total tackles in a game, 12 of them solo. His speed and aggressiveness on the field shined, especially in the third quarter with a forced fumble that was recovered by senior defensive end Jatorian Hansford.

Scott commended Boyles on his defensive leadership earlier in the week.

“The way he prepares [and] the way he practices brings an intensity and leadership to that group,” Scott said. “We got to be able to coach and get more guys to play that same level.”

Bulls needed Bohanon

Before Bohanon suffered from a shoulder injury, good things happened when he had the ball. Using his dual threat capabilities, he was a playmaker for the Bulls.

Setting up the Bulls’ first touchdown of the game, Bohanon ran for a first down and completed an 8-yard pass to sophomore wide receiver Jimmy Horn Jr. in the end zone.

Bohanon also sprinted for a 33-yard running touchdown in the second quarter before having to exit the game.

Even after only playing for a quarter-and-a-half, Bohanon led the team for the most rushing yards at 59 for the game. His passing game looked sharp as well, completing seven out of eight throws.

Marsh is questionable

Marsh did not capitalize on the momentum Bohanon created when he had to exit the game early. Describing Marsh’s playing time as “up and down,” Scott knew the offense could have been better.

Any chance of responding ended after Tulane recovered the ball for another score in the end zone.

“The turnover there was a critical mistake, going to have to do a better job protecting the ball,” Scott said. “Overall, we didn’t play well enough offensively in the second half.”

Marsh threw for 150 yards and completed two touchdowns.

Unfinished woes

When the Bulls take the field every week, it is a reprise of the one before. A constant effort of playing from behind, unable to walk off celebrating as a winning team.

After Saturday’s game, Scott said he thought the challenges were too hard to overcome, between losing Bohanon and the series of plays in the second half that gave Tulane the victory.

“We almost have to play perfect,” Scott said. “It’s just kind of what it feels like and that’s frustrating. We got to find a way to play closer to perfect.”