BULLS PIGSKIN COACH SPEAK – FEBRUARY 18
By Leo Haggerty
USF FOOTBALL WINTER UPDATE
Had a chance to ask a couple of questions of South Florida Head Football Coach Jeff Scott. The Bulls Head Man was giving an update on what has transpired since the end of his inaugural season as the Green & Gold prepare to start spring practice next week.
Below are his responses to my inquiries and they are a couple of hard ball ones. Enjoy.
LH : NBC has released a study that, among high school students, having to remote learn is increasing stress. The one comment that resonated with me was by an athlete. He said what he really misses is being to spend time with his teammates. Basically, your guys are in solitary confinement. Is it a factor that your team just can’t gather together?
JS : I would say that, at that point, there is no doubt that it’s very real. I would say that last year, from March all the way through December, it had more of an impact then now. Also, young people are able to adapt to things. Now that we have got through it, and we understand a little bit as to where we are, we are a little more fortunate because of our testing. Our weekly testing and those type of things. We’re an outside sport. We’re outside practicing so we are, probably, able to do a little bit more than some other sports and some other groups. Definitely, to me, I will never forget those two and a half months that we were home that started the 13th of March. We were home for two and a half months just behind a computer screen and there was no in person interaction. That was very, very challenging for our players and our coaches especially us being first year coaches. You want to get to know your players. That was a big challenge. When we got past that, we felt very fortunate and happy and blessed to have some type of meetings. We’re still working under the same guidelines as far as meetings and meeting spaces where we have to spread out. I would say, and not use the word normal yet, but it’s not as big of a distraction I think for us than, maybe, what it was last fall. Our guys have adapted. Really, it’s a fight. Everybody is wanting to move forward and move on. Obviously, we have to let the science catch up with that but, I know, that the mindset for our players is that they want to focus on the football part. The weight room part and all that and not the stuff that we still have to deal with when it comes to Covid.
LH ; You said you had a good number of scholarship players that enrolled in January. Does their scholarship start now or do you have to wait until later in the year to start it?
JS : Yeah, they are. The mid years that come in, their scholarships start as soon as they get here in January. Rather than coming in June, they start in January. It’s really beneficial especially for us. A lot of these guys will help us this year. To be able to go through the off season workout program with our players. They’ll go through the meetings and spring practice. It’s almost like a year head start instead of showing up over the summer.