2005 South Florida Bulls Basketball Preview
2005 South Florida Bulls Team Preview
The Bulls are yet one more team making the change from Conference USA, where they finished 11th, to the Big East. Will they do any better in their new conference? Probably not, especially since they are frontloaded with freshmen and low on returning talent.
Coach Robert McCullum enters his third year at South Florida. His record over that short span is 21-38, while his stats for his entire coaching career are 65-81. McCullum has four returning starters this year, each of whom averaged between 5.7 and 6.6 points per game.
The Bulls lost five experienced players from last season, including point guard Brian Swift (15.9 PPG), forward Terrence Leather (18.2 PPG and 9.6 RPG), and guard Marlyn Bryant (8.0 PPG and 5.2 RPG). This is a rebuilding year if there ever was one for this team.
New players include Purdue transfer Melvin Buckley, a swingman who will be given a major role on South Florida, and Junior college transfer Melvyn Richardson who, at 6’ 10” and 248 pounds, brings much needed inside size to the Bulls. Richardson averaged 8.1 points and 6.7 rebounds per game last season. South Florida can use that and more from him.
Two other transfers who will see playing time are point guard David Sills and guard/forward Mattis McHugh. Sills is a good playmaker and McHugh has energy to spare, which makes both promising prospects off the South Florida bench.
The freshmen will also be called upon to contribute by coach McCullum, including forward Zaronn Cann who is effective and efficient playing inside and dangerous outside wielding his solid jumper. Point guard Chris Howard is a real heads-up player who has a chance to start for the Bulls. At center Frane Markusovic can hit his shot but he needs more muscle and endurance to play in the Big East. He’ll be working on that this year.
South Florida may very well finish dead last in the extremely competitive Big East. But that doesn’t mean they won’t be fighting to improve and win throughout the year.
For more info on the 2005 Bulls check out the official South Florida athletic site.