By Alex Eubanks
After beginning the season with two slow starts, both ending with a lopsided Bulls win, USF has rattled off two dominating victories as the underdog.
Thursday night’s win, where the Bulls trampled the Owls, means more coming off last year’s sole AAC loss against Temple.
While the first quarter was a close, sloppy, penalty-filled 3-0 game, it quickly shifted in USF’s favor. The Bulls defense overtook Temple’s offense and had each member of Temple’s three-way Quarterback rotation under siege.
On the offensive end, USF’s running game surfaced as Flowers, Tice and Johnson combined for 282 yards and four touchdowns. After the second quarter, the Bulls completely routed Temple, for a 43-7 victory in their delayed AAC season opener.
While the game was a route, the game was nowhere near as close as it appeared and if the USF passing attack had been on point. If Quinton Flowers had thrown a bit better and had gotten a better route running from receivers the game easily could have been a much bigger blowout victory.
In order to climb up in the rankings, the Bulls need to continue their recent string of wins. With San Diego State also succeeding on the field and with a much better resume after two big victories against power five schools at Arizona State and Stanford, the Bulls will need to keep stringing together big wins as they try to stay ahead of the Aztecs.
The two teams are the clear-cut favorites to be chosen for a New Year’s Six bowl game, but USF will face an uphill battle as they try to gain ground against a lackluster AAC schedule. The Bulls will need to have someone in conference to go on a run so that they can get a resume booster.
Houston seems like an obvious contender with their talented defense headlined by Ed Oliver. Memphis is also a strong possibility with their big victory against Josh Rosen’s UCLA, despite the fact that the game would need to come in the AAC championship.
USF should be proud of their win and will continue to succeed over the course of their schedule. But they face a difficult road ahead as they chase down the dream of going undefeated and attending a New Year’s Six Bowl.
Header photo courtesy of Chaveli Guzman | The Oracle