By Leo Haggerty
Archived under Featured Articles – College & University of South Florida

South Florida travelled up to North Carolina to take on East Carolina in Greenville.  It was a game that the Bulls, plain and simple, had to win.

After the Pirates took the opening kickoff to the house, the Green and Gold answered with 35 unanswered first half points on the way to a 45-20 thumping of EC.  The victory moved the Bulls to 4-4 overall and 2-2 in the American Athletic Conference East Division.  East Carolina dropped to 3-5 overall and 0-4 in the AAC East.

So how did South Florida come away with the victory?  That one is easy.  USF ran the football and stopped the run.

The Bulls amassed 347 yards on the ground. With RB Jordan Cronkrute doing most of the damage. #2 totted the pigskin 12 times for 129 yards and a couple TDs.

This allowed redshirt FR quarterback Jordan McCloud to be prodigious with the pass.  #12 only had to sling it a dozen times and completed completed 9 for 102 yards and a couple more scores.

The USF defense also limited East Carolina to 102 yards rushing on 38 attempts.  That doesn’t take a mathematical genius to figure out that’s less than three yards a carry.  That kind of defensive performance will win you a lot of college football games.

The reason that winning this contest was imperative for the Bulls was the remaining four contests.  After the bye week, USF has Temple followed by Cincinnati then Memphis leading to the War on I-4 with UCF.

In those four games, South Florida will be a decided underdog. That’s why this win was of the much-needed variety.

Can USF find a way to beat the Owls on Thursday night?  Check out my GOAL LINE STAND column later this week to find out my 4 keys to victory. Enjoy.