2009 season review: USF vs. Connecticut

Already bowl eligible, the South Florida Bulls headed to East Hartford hoping to improve their position in the Big East standings.

USF looked to do just that when quarterback B.J. Daniels put the visitors in the lead with just 40 seconds to play. But it just wasn't to be as the Huskies place-kicker was true from 42 yards out as time expired to give Connecticut the 29-27 victory.

It was certainly an emotionally charged win for the home team as the Huskies continued to play out their season despite the tragedy that struck the team when Jasper Howard passed away.

"These kids are unbelievable," Connecticut head coach Randy Edsall told the Associated Press. "They just never gave up. They never stopped playing until the final whistle."

"It's so emotional to see these guys out there playing their hearts out, especially in a game like this where it comes down to the end," Teggart added. "All those guys, all those seniors depending on you, and I was glad I could come through for those guys. It means a lot to me to send them out with a win."

Daniels tried his very hardest to secure a win for the Bulls who now have dropped five of their last seven games, but perhaps destiny had a different plan in place.

The Tallahassee native and signal caller completed 11 of 16 pass attempts for 160 yards while also leading South Florida in rushing 88 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.

"I thought B.J. played well," said head coach Jim Leavitt. "He's a courageous competitor. I just thought he played extremely well."

For the second time in school history, the Bulls played a game where the snow was falling.

A game-opening temperature at 34 degrees was the coldest since a 29-degree kickoff at West Virginia in 2008. Coach Leavitt didn't believe that the adverse weather conditions had much to do with the outcome of the contest.

"You don't. It was tough for both teams," he said. "The key to this game was our attitude. They had a great game plan. They really kept focus."

Running backs Mike Ford and Moise Plancher contributed 74 and 31 yards rushing, respectively. Overall, USF rushed for 193 yards and four touchdowns - a necessity given the conditions.

Receivers Carlton Mitchell and Jessie Hester led the Bulls in receiving as the pair six passes for just under 100 yards combined.

Defensively, Nate Allen, Jerome Murphy, and Sam Barrington led the team in tackles with seven a piece.

Defensive end George Selvie added six total tackles including one and one-half tackles for loss on the night. Jason-Pierre Paul had much lower keyed night registering just a single tackle, but did block a field goal attempt in the fourth quarter.

The 2009 season which started on the brightest of notes had finished in disappointment. A 5-0 start turned into a final regular season mark of 7-5.

South Florida was bowl eligible however, and therefore began the waiting game to see where and who the Bulls would be playing.
Talk about it on The Bullpen or El Toro Loco.