The American Athletic Conference announced a few changes to their fall football schedule on Friday. One change affects USF, with their home game against Tulsa being moved from Saturday, November 18, to Thursday, November 16, for a national TV slot on ESPN.
This move doesn’t really affect either team’s preparation for the game. Both USF and Tulsa have bye weeks on the previous weekend. On top of that, it gives the Bulls two extra days to prepare for what we’re anticipating to be a vastly improved C. squad in Orlando the following Friday.
It’s another opportunity for a team possibly gunning for a New Year’s Six bowl at that point in the season to get some national exposure. The only other game currently scheduled for November 16 is Buffalo/Ball State. All eyes should be on Tampa as USF hosts Phillip Montgomery’s explosive Tulsa team, who could be contending for the American’s West Division title.
One downside of this is that there will only be four Saturday home games for USF in 2017. Illinois visits on Friday, September 15, Temple is scheduled for Thursday, September 21, and now the Tulsa game (Senior Night) is on a Thursday, too.
This will be Tulsa’s first visit to Tampa. The only other meeting between the schools was in 2014, when the Bulls overcame a 20-point deficit to beat the Golden Hurricane 38-30. It still stands as USF’s biggest football comeback ever.
We’ll see if Charlie Strong and company can live up to pre-season expectations and indeed have a, dare I say it, 10-0 squad heading into this mid-November showdown.