#88 WR Austin Aikens
Redshirt Junior, 6'0", 180 lbs.
Stats in 2014: Austin redshirted as he sat out a year after transferring from Western Kentucky.
Spot On Spring Depth Chart: Not listed.
How He Came to USF: In a very roundabout fashion. Austin was a standout receiver at local Plant High School, earning himself offers from the likes of Missouri, Iowa and Boston College (it appears USF was in on his recruitment but never formally extended an offer). But he chose to join Willie Taggart at WKU, where he emerged as a home run threat as a true freshman, hauling in eight catches for 217 yards (over 27 ypc!) and a pair of touchdowns. He seemed to fall out of favor with the new staff in the offseason and left the program in August of 2013 before joining Taggart at USF as a walk-on last summer.
Recruiting Rankings: Both Rivals and 247 had Aikens pegged as a low three-star prospect.
Projected Playing Time: Very much up in the air at this point. The Bulls desperately need bodies at receiver-- the current depth chart includes a whopping two players who have caught a ball in a Bulls uniform-- and while "proven" might be a bit too strong a term for Aikens, he's at least got FBS experience. But he didn't make too much of a dent in the spring, and the first-string rotation seems fairly set with Rodney Adams, Ryeshene Bronson and A.J. Legree (plus Chase Whitehead, who emerged as a threat in the slot). If Aikens can beat out players like Stanley Clerveaux and Alex Mut this summer, perhaps he'll work his way into some playing time. Otherwise, I wouldn't expect to see much of him.
Fun Fact: THIS CATCH THOUGH.
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This one's nice, too.
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Clearly Austin's got chops. We'll see if he gets a chance to use them.