#23 CB Mazzi Wilkins
Redshirt Sophomore, 6’0", 170 lbs.
2015 Stats: In his first year of action following a redshirt season in 2014, Mazzi played in 11 games. He made a total of 20 tackles, the majority coming early in the season, and broke up a pass.
Position on Depth Chart: Wilkins was the backup to Ronnie Hoggins at right cornerback following spring practice.
How He Came To USF: Mazzi played cornerback and free safety at Tampa’s Plant High School. His senior year saw him receive all-Hillsborough County honors for recording 67 tackles, an interception (returned for a touchdown), a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery as the Panthers reached the Class 8A semifinals. Wilkins ended up with a lot of offers, including Rutgers, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Washington State, and several of USF’s conference rivals. But he committed to the Bulls in August 2013 and stuck through their awful season to signing day.
Here’s Mazzi’s senior highlight reel:
Recruiting Rankings: Wilkins was a three-star recruit across the board.
Projected Playing Time: Mazzi should continue getting regular playing time on speical teams, where he’s contributed since high school. He’ll also feature in passing situations in the USF secondary, and he might be the first player off the bench if anything happens to Deatrick Nichols or Hoggins.
Follow Him On... Wilkins is on Twitter at @MazziWilkins. His Instagram is private, but I gotta say trap2smooth_23 is a fantastic username.
Trivia: We’ve now met all four USF players from Plant on our countdown. (That’s tied for the most from any single high school in USF’s roster — Immokalee High School also has four.) Do you remember the other three Panthers?