at South Florida 70 ... Florida A&M 17
Posted Sep 17, 2011

Week 3 CFN Fearless Prediction & Game Story - Florida A&M at South Florida

2011 Predictions & Game Story 

Week 3 - Florida A&M at USF

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Sept. 17 at South Florida 70 ... Florida A&M 17
CFN Analysis: COMING

(AP) TAMPA, Fla. -- B.J. Daniels threw for a career-high 382 yards and four touchdowns, pacing No. 20 South Florida's 70-17 rout of Florida A&M on Saturday night.

A week after throwing for 359 yards but just one TD in a 30-point victory over Ball State, Daniels led the Bulls (3-0) to touchdowns on eight of 10 drives he directed before leaving the game for good in the third quarter. The redshirt junior who grew up near the FAMU campus in Tallahassee completed 21 of 33 passes and also scored on a 5-yard run.

Darrell Scott had a big night, too, rushing for a career-best 146 yards and scoring two TDs on the ground. The 240-pound transfer from Colorado also turned a screen pass into an 84-yard touchdown, rumbling up the left sideline before cutting back to the middle on the field to stay ahead of the pursuit.

Austin Trainor threw for 106 yards for FAMU (1-2), including second-quarter touchdowns of 4 yards to Lavante Page and 32 yards to Edmond Baker.

Daniels, whose father works for FAMU, began the rout with a 43-yard scoring pass to A.J. Love. The Bulls outgained the Rattlers 537 yards to 112 in the opening half and finished with a school-record 745 yards total offense -- eclipsing the 580 they gained in a victory over Liberty in 2001.

USF moved into the Top 25 for the first time in nearly two years following a season-opening upset at Notre Dame. The next three games on the schedule -- Ball State, FAMU and next week against Texas-El Paso -- were bunched together in hopes of giving coach Skip Holtz an opportunity to develop the team's depth by giving inexperienced reserves valuable playing time in preparation for the start of Big East play at Pittsburgh on Sept. 29.

The Bulls scored on three of four possessions before Holtz started substituting, replacing Daniels with backup quarterback Bobby Eveld late in the first quarter.

The sophomore's second pass was intercepted by Devontae Johnson, though, and the FAMU cornerback's 48-yard return to the USF 7 set up the Rattlers' first touchdown.

Daniels returned and threw TD passes of 18 yards to Sterling Griffin and 27 yards to Andre Davis, while also watching Scott score on his long catch-and-run to build the lead to 49-14.

In all, Daniels led the Bulls on touchdowns on seven of nine drives before halftime, with one of the two not reaching the end zone ending on a fumble at the FAMU 34 and the other inside the Rattlers' 10 on the final play of the half.

Davis also blocked a punt and returned it 11 yards for a third-quarter touchdown. Scott scored on runs of 6 and 56 yards, then capped his night with 30-yard scoring jaunt on the last drive Daniels was in the game.

Eveld finished up for the Bulls, leading one long TD drive.

Florida A&M (1-1) at South Florida (2-0) Sept. 17, 7:00

Here's The Deal … In a weird way, might South Florida's 37-7 blowout of Ball State on Saturday be more impressive than its Week 1 upset at Notre Dame? With a letdown anticipated, the Bulls gored the Cardinals from start to finish, the sign of a rapidly maturing program. Head coach Skip Holtz has his kids focused and expecting to dominate, which are bigger hurdles to success than any personnel issues. USF has debuted at No. 22 in the Coaches Poll, and has joined West Virginia as the unscientific co-favorites to win the Big East Conference.

Florida A&M has split its first two games, beating Fort Valley State, 28-22, before dropping a MEAC game to Hampton. While the loss puts the Rattlers in an early league hole, they still have designs on a playoff berth after just missing the postseason in 2010.

Why Florida A&M Might Win: The Rattlers house an aggressive, athletic defense that can frustrate the opposition. Neither of their first two opponents was able to get much traction, averaging just over three yards a carry. The strength of the units rests of the back seven, which is quick to press up and deliver the payload. LB Demarius Folsom and DBs John Ojo and Greg Harvey play the game at top speed and maximum intensity. South Florida is still prone to erraticism on offense, stumbling on third downs and in the red zone.

Why South Florida Might Win: A Bulls defense that was retooled in the offseason has begun to gel earlier than most expected. South Florida just got done shutting out Ball State for the game's first 47 minutes, and is among the nation's leaders in takeaways. A Florida A&M squad that's thrown three picks and cannot run the ball effectively will have few solutions for the Bulls. USF has closing speed everywhere, but especially at linebacker, where DeDe Lattimore, Sam Barrington and Michael Lanaris are relentless. Rattlers QB Austin Trainor will be haunted all night by corners Kayvon Webster and Quenton Washington, who give away little cushion to receivers.

What To Watch Out For: The South Florida offense was terrific last weekend, but was it just an anomaly or the result of playing an average MAC team? B.J. Daniels threw for a career-best 359 yards, connecting with almost every receiver on the roster, and Darrell Scott churned 82 yards rushing and a touchdown on 11 carries. If Week 2 ends up being an offensive turning point, the Big East will need to be on high alert because the Bulls will be tough to corral. On defense, former blue-chip JUCO DE Claude Davis is making a push for a starting job in his final year of eligibility. He's bagged the first three sacks of his career, including a pair last weekend.

What Will Happen: Having already shown it will keep its eye on the ball, South Florida will have few problems dismissing Florida A&M before emptying the bench. Despite picking up a signature win in Week 1, the best may actually lay ahead for the Bulls, which are improving on both sides of the ball. Holtz will use this week's cushy opposition to continue teaching, while getting important reps for his backups and younger players.

CFN Prediction: South Florida 45 … Florida A&M 9 
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