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September 30, 2013
Bench to start Saturday
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It was a promising start for USF against Miami. On the Bulls' first play first-time starter Steven Bench connected with wide-receiver Chris Dunkley for 17 yards. Bench would lead the Bulls down the field and tie the game at 7- all.
Bench stated in the post game press conference "they had been practicing that play all week and that's what they did, and it worked out."
Following that series, the offense continued to struggle for most of the game. USF did manage a 96 yard drive - their farthest of the season - after a Hassan Childs interception.
Bench connected with Derrick Hopkins for a 16 yard touchdown pass near the end of the game - his second touchdown pass as a USF Bull. Bench went 4-of-6 for 89 yards.
For the first time all season USF's head football coach Willie Taggart started - and kept - a quarterback in the entire game.
"I was excited for my first start, and did what I could to help the team," Bench said. "Of course there are things to build on, we're going into conference play and we're going to focus on that."
Taggart mentioned Monday in the American Athletic Conference press conference, that even though it was "loss number 4, good things came out of it."
Despite being down by 35 points, USF did not give up in the fourth quarter. In addition they scored their first defensive touchdown of the entire season. Following Saturday's game, Taggart said "they kept fighting, they kept making plays, and we are going to build off of this fourth quarter."
"This was his first time he played an entire game from start to finish since high school, and that was a big deal," Bench said after the game. "You can't coach experience."
Taggart in the AAC press conference that Saturday Bench will be USF's starting quarterback against Cincinnati.