After reaching the NCAA tournament (and nearly advancing to the Sweet 16) in 2012, Stan Heath’s USF Bulls struggled mightily in 2012-13. The Bulls finished the season with a 12-19 record (3-15 Big East), with their sputtering offense being one of the big reasons why.
USF managed to score an average of just 58.8 points per game, a number that ranked last in the Big East and 332nd nationally. Add to this low percentages from the field (38.9%) and from beyond the arc (31.3%) and there’s no secret that the Bulls need to get better offensively as they begin life in the American Athletic Conference.
Those offensive struggles are what make the decision of 2014 shooting guard Troy Holston to verbally commit to USF so important. Holston, a 6-4 guard who attends Oldsmar Christian (Fla.), saw his stock rise during the summer thanks to his ability to consistently knock down shots.
“It gives a lot of value because there aren’t a lot of kids that can shoot the three as consistent as I can,” Holston said. “There are a lot of people that can dunk but there aren’t a lot of people that can shoot. I think that makes me stand out and have value.”
Given the Bulls’ numbers from last season, it goes without saying that they can use a boost in that department.
At the end of the 2013-14 season USF will lose two experienced contributors in 6-9 wing Victor Rudd Jr. (12.3 ppg, 6.9 rpg in 2012-13; led the team in both categories) and guard Martino Brock (5.5, 3.7), with Musa Abdul-Aleem (3.3 ppg in nine games) and Javontae Hawkins (4.5 ppg in 26 games) having eligibility remaining.
USF also signed six players to National Letters of Intent, including 6-6 forwards Bo Zeigler and Dre’Kalo Clayton, and Mt. San Antonio (Calif.) JC product Corey Allen Jr. (21.2 ppg as a sophomore) joins the program as well.
Looking past this season the Bulls have to account for the loss of Rudd and give point guard Anthony Collins, who averaged 8.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game last season, more pieces to work with. Landing Holston is a step in the right direction for USF.