2019 USF Football: #PlayFastScoreFaster USF Football

Bulls Fall Hard to Knights in What Might be Charlie Strong’s Final Game

USF gets blown out by UCF to end the 2019 football season in what should be the end of the Charlie Strong Era in Tampa.
South Florida RB Johnny Ford's one yard touchdown run vs. UCF 2019
USF RB Johnny Ford’s touchdown vs. UCF at Spectrum Stadium on November 29, 2019.

TAMPA, NOV. 29, 2019 – With absolutely nothing to lose coming into this game, USF seemed like they might be able to somehow pull off a big upset in Orlando. But that didn’t happen.

“We gotta get ready to go into it. We have to get better. We know that we got enough here. We just gotta work on it and improve it, go out and recruit to add to the guys we already have. Then we’ll be able to have something special.”
~ Charlie Strong

UCF came out early and rammed the ball down USF’s throat. UCF ran 52 offensive plays to USF 29 in the first half. The Bulls had seven penalties, five of which were false starts, and looked more undisciplined than they have all season.  These problems fall squarely on the coaching staff. Throughout the season, Bulls fans have been calling for Charlie Strong’s head. If this game is his final outing, it would be a fitting end to an abysmal run at USF.

“What bothers you is that we didn’t come out and compete each and every game,” Head Coach Charlie Strong said. “We know this, that we have to get scores, we have to be able to run the ball and be physical at the point of attack.”

Johnny Ford was back in the lineup this week following his suspension and seemed to be the only bright spot on an otherwise dim USF offense. He busted a 39-yard run to put the Bulls in the red zone and then capped it off with the Bulls only touchdown of the night.

The War on I-4 didn’t disappoint when it came to the energy both teams brought. Things got chippy very early on when USF players walked to the UCF side of the field during warmups and started a shouting match to set the tone early.

An on field brawl, that somehow only ended up in offsetting unsportsmanlike conduct penalties, broke out in the second quarter when Nick Roberts was thrown down by his face mask.

“Defensively we played well early,” Strong said. “But we know that we have to be able to make plays on offense to get them off the field. So we’ve got a ways to go. I told our guys that in the offseason things have got to change. We’ve got to have a different attitude. If you want to be here, then be here and we are going to go to work.”

In the last game for some key seniors, everyone hoped for more. Mitchell Wilcox, Kirk Livingstone, Jordan Cronkrite and Greg Reaves, to name a few, all have played their last game for the green and gold. Going into the offseason, the underclassmen have some big shoes to fill as these have been the guys who have dominated USF football for the last four years. Wilcox had his 100th career reception in his final game as one of the best tight ends in USF history.

“Let me tell you this,” Strong said when asked about his job security, “I know how to win. I’ve been apart of two championships and I’ve got a good coaching staff… I don’t worry about that. I know that we can go out and get it done.”

At the time of this posting, there is still no word from the athletics staff on the status of Charlie Strong. With an announcement of some kind most likely coming soon. Stick with @SoFloBulls on Twitter and Instagram for the latest updates.

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