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Don’t let their record fool you, USF is overrated

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The Bulls aren’t who they appear to be.

NCAA Football: South Florida at Central Florida Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Yes I said it. The 2017 University of South Florida football team is overrated. I know they’ve been ranked for most of the year and are currently ranked in both the AP and USA Today polls. I know they have the dynamic Quinton Flowers at quarterback and their head coach has beaten us twice in his career already. I know that the USF defense is top 30 in the country, I understand all of that but this team is still overrated.

South Florida has one of the weakest schedules in the country, and fourth worst in the American Athletic Conference. That’s right, fourth worst schedule in a group of five conference, that’s good for 90th in the nation. In comparison, Texas Tech has the 30th most difficult schedule in the country and plays in a power five conference where 80% of teams reached bowl eligibility. Would USF still be 9-2 if they had to play teams like Arizona State, Oklahoma, and TCU throughout the season? Not likely.

Ok I get it, they have an easy schedule but I’m sure they’ve beaten some good teams here and there throughout the year right?

That answer is no. USF has beaten a grand total of one team that had a winning record in the regular season, and you want to know who that one team was? Stony Brook. Yes the Stony Brook Seawolves in the FCS is the only winning program that South Florida defeated this year. The second best victory this season came against a 6-6 Temple team that needed to beat a 2-10 Tulsa team in the final game of the season to be bowl eligible.

The only other two winning teams they’ve played this year are the two losses on their record. Their first loss came to Houston -yes, that Houston- the same Houston that Tech beat rather soundly. To make matters worse, they lost to Houston at home. So this big bad Bulls team lost to a team at home that Tech beat on the road pretty convincingly until the dogs were called off.

Now the best game USF played this year did come in their second loss, to UCF. Central Florida has actually proven to be a tough opponent and South Florida really played their rivals tough in Orlando. In what was the game of the year, it was virtually Quinton Flowers vs the entire Knights team. Interesting part about that game however, is the notion that a defense that’s supposed to be one of the best in the country, gave up over 500 yards and 49 points in this game. Now this UCF offense is the highest scoring offense in the country, so maybe I shouldn’t be so harsh. Then again, Maryland, Memphis, Navy, SMU, and Temple were able to hold them to fewer points. For a defense that is supposed to be dominant, you would hope to at least hold UCF to fewer points than their average.

But Al didn’t you pick USF to beat Texas Tech?

That I did, however the more and more I look over tape from this South Florida team and analyze them, I realize this team is nowhere near as good as advertised. This is virtually a one man band named Quinton Flowers and the Bulls, and a defense that struggles against spread offenses. The Bulls fooled me, just as they have fooled most of the nation, with their inflated stats, good record, and game against UCF. However, now that we’ve all had time to reassess the team a few weeks after the War on I-4, I’ve realized that this team is nothing more than a thing intended to deceive others by unjustifiably being credited with accomplishments or qualities.