USF received some pleasant news this morning, as after weeks of swimming around in the “Receiving Votes” category, the newly 10-2 Bulls have landed in the Top 25 for the first time since September 2011. USF is ranked #23 in the coaches’ poll and #24 (tied with Pittsburgh) in the Associated Press poll.
The USF program has seen plenty of national rankings in its brief, 20-year history, but this is just the second time that the Bulls have finished a regular season ranked. The other time, of course, was the magical 2007 season, which saw the Bulls plummet out of the Top 25 after an embarrassing loss in the Sun Bowl against Oregon. This year’s squad will have the opportunity to be the first USF team ever to finish a season ranked. Whatever happens, this is a very pleasant and deserved cherry on top of a fantastic season, and a huge reward for the players and coaches who have been publicly lobbying for inclusion in the rankings for a couple weeks now.
SIDE NOTE: I am obligated to add that The Daily Stampede’s official stance on rankings is that they are generally silly and do not matter as long as the team itself is good. If you listened to our latest podcast, you also know that my official stance on rankings is that I want all of them, and that I will wither up and die if USF doesn’t receive adequate national attention.
It’s been a very, very long five years, but this feels like another friendly reminder that USF football is out of the woods and nationally relevant once again. What a remarkable season from Coach Taggart and the entire team.