October 26, 2019.
That’s how long it’s been since the South Florida Bulls beat a FBS opponent. But, by god, they did it tonight. The Bulls mauled the Temple Owls 34-14 in a game that wasn’t even as close as the score indicates inside Raymond James Stadium on Saturday night.
USF (2-5, 1-2 AAC) set a single-game rushing record with 421 yards on the ground behind the efforts of running backs Jaren Mangham, Kelley Joiner, Jr., and Brian Battie.
Mangham finished with 26 carries for 152 yards, and two touchdowns. It’s his first career 100-yard game, and his 12 rushing touchdowns is just six shy of Quinton Flowers record of 18, set in 2016. Joiner added 126 yards and a score as well.
But, the play of the game was made by tight end Chris Carter.
The Bulls’ opening possession stalled, and the field goal unit came on to kick the short field goal. Except the snap when over the head of holder Kenny Scribner, and Temple’s Keyshawn Paul scooped the ball up and was heading for a touchdown until Carter hawked him down from behind and tackled Paul at the USF five. Three plays later, safety Mekhi LaPointe intercepts the pass as the defense hold. The Bulls went down and scored a touchdown, and never looked back.
Quarterback TImmy McClain did not return in the second half after he tweaked his ankle late in the second quarter. Backup Katravis Marsh filled in wonderfully as he expertly handed the ball off to the running backs as the Bulls controlled the ball for over 44 minutes. Scott told the media that McClain was cleared to re-enter the game, but decided against it with ECU coming up in less than a week.
- Linebacker Antonio Grier secured his second interception in as many games. He also added a sack.
- Jimmy Horn Jr had seven catches for 56 yards.
- Battie rushed for 77 yards on 12 carries.
- USF had 19 rushes of more than 10 yards.
- Wide receiver Xavier Weaver suited up, but did not play as he recovers from a tweaked hamstring.