USF has received its first verbal commitment of the 2011 recruiting cycle. Punta Gorda Charlotte wide receiver Alex Mut is the first member of that class to become a Bull. The 6’2”, 185-pound pass catcher hauled in 58 receptions for 1,014 yards and 14 touchdowns as a high school junior and will look to improve upon those numbers as a senior. Mut has always wanted to go to USF and chose the Bulls over Duke and Rutgers. He hopes to be able to contribute immediately on the field and may get that chance with the wide receiver depth chart expected to be wide open in 2011. Getting Mut may have slightly opened the door for USF when it comes to his teammate, running back Mike Bellamy, but with offers from some of the larger programs in the nation, Bellamy is ultimately expected to go elsewhere.
Jim Leavitt has decided to sue USF after all, citing that his firing wasn’t legal and the investigation conducted was obviously biased. His lawyer had the following to say: “The USF report is a rambling collection of hearsay/double hearsay statements and non-contextual quotes that, in essence, is a subjective, picked-over, blatantly biased summary by USF.” Well, okay then. So basically, they believe Leavitt was unjustly fired. The former head coach still denies anything ever happened and due to that believes he is owed a large part of his remaining salary. I have to wonder how we ever got to this point with coaches. Having to have reason to let someone go. Is because he no longer fits the ideals the university is looking for a good enough reason? Multi-million dollar buyouts. If you don’t win consistently, why should you receive money to be fired? Some of the standards are put in place to protect the coaches and some are put in place to protect the schools. I get that much. What I don’t get is how we have gotten to a point where it is so difficult for either to move on if they feel the fit isn’t right anymore. Leavitt will fight this until the end – or at least until the point the school offers him what he, and his lawyers, deem a worthy settlement amount – and it will happen again. An incident will occur and a school won’t be able to fire their coach as easily. Or a coach won’t provide a winning program, but will be given millions to be shown the door.
It’s hard to believe that 2010 will mark Robert Marve’s fourth season in college. That’s right. Marve was part of the recruiting class that included soon-to-be NFL Draft pick Jimmy Clausen and new Florida starting quarterback John Brantley. Look at the top of the Rivals100 from that year and you’ll find five of the first six names will be playing on Sundays this fall. Marve on the other hand will be starting over at Purdue. After announcing he could no longer play for Randy Shannon at Miami, Marve opened up his options and eventually decided on the Boilermakers. He’ll be competing for the starting quarterback job this fall. For now, it looks like Marve may have landed on his feet, but it’s still a story to follow. Marve had his troubles at Miami and was far from a model citizen. Miami blocked him from transferring to a number of schools even though it was initially said he wanted to come closer to his Tampa home to be with his father who was sick. In case you aren’t too good with geography, Purdue is quite a ways away from Tampa. But Marve has settled in and seems to be doing well. How he does on the field is a different story altogether.
Sometimes being dominant in one sport isn’t enough. Sometimes you must be dominant in multiple sports to prove your rule over all others. Jeff Demps is among those chosen few. Not only is he faster than most in pads, he’s faster than most without them as well. There’s a good possibility we’ll be watching him in the Summer Olympics in the future, but for now we can settle for Demps the National Champion. Demps set a school record in the 60-meter dash and then won the final to lead the Gators to their first indoor National Championship. Demps was named an All-American in the process. Cheers to the entire men’s team and the women’s team (who finished fourth) as well. (H/T: One Eyed Willy)
Today’s list is easy. My final four in order of finish. I would give my standard bracket warning, but you already know it by heart. So right or wrong, here are my final four. Realistically three and four could be tied, but consider it my push for a third-place game. And that’s right, there is no Kentucky. Take what you will out of that. It could’ve been spite. It could be the fact that I’m not sure I see them winning six in a row to take the title.
4. West Virginia
The Sixth Man: With this site taken the turn toward college football, the March Madness Challenge has suffered. This year, and most likely for future years, I’ll have a group on ESPN.com’s Tournament Challenge you can join. There is no prize other than bragging rights or pride. I’ve never been one for pride. But bragging rights…that’s a different story. So saddle up and join the fun. It’s easy. Head over to the group page or find it yourself (the group name is The Bull Gator, as if you couldn’t have guessed that). Once there enter in the password – thebullgator – and fill out your bracket. Play to win, play for fun, or just play. It doesn’t really matter, but become immortalized in the annals of this site. It’s your chance to take down the two-time winner, One Eyed Willy, and shut him up forever. (Please note: there’s no guarantee you’ll shut him up forever, or even a few minutes for that matter.)