South Florida Bulls
|South Florida Bulls|
|University||University of South Florida|
|Athletic director||Michael Kelly|
|Varsity teams||17 (8 men's, 9 women's)|
|Football stadium||Raymond James Stadium|
|Basketball arena||Yuengling Center|
|Ice hockey arena||AdventHealth Center Ice (club team)|
|Baseball stadium||USF Baseball Stadium|
|Softball stadium||USF Softball Stadium|
|Soccer stadium||Corbett Stadium|
|Tennis courts||USF Varsity Tennis Courts|
|Sailing venue||Haney Landing Sailing Center|
USF Track and Field Stadium |
The Corral (Volleyball)
The Claw (Golf)
|Mascot||Rocky the Bull|
Former Nickname: Golden Brahmans
|Fight song||Golden Brahman March|
|Colors||Green and Gold
The South Florida Bulls (also known as USF Bulls) are the athletic teams that represent the University of South Florida. The university competes in NCAA Division I of the NCAA, and as a member of the American Athletic Conference. The university currently sponsors 17 varsity sports: baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, football, men's and women's golf, women's sailing, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, and women's volleyball, as well as many club teams including baseball, men's and women's rugby, men's and women's lacrosse, and men's ice hockey.  
Across all sports, the Bulls have won one team NCAA National Championship (Women's Swimming in 1985). Outside of the additional five individual and two relay championships in Women's Swimming (all by members of the 1985 team), USF athletes have won seven individual and relay Men's Swimming national championships and two individual Women's Rifle national championships.  The varsity Sailing team (which is not sponsored by the NCAA) won the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association Sloop championship in 2009. 
|Men's sports||Women's sports|
|Track and field†||Track and field†|
|† – Track and field includes both indoor and outdoor.|
Under Jim Leavitt, USF began college football play as a Division I-AA independent in 1997, after having their first team meetings under a tree on campus. The team grew rapidly and moved to Division I-A in 2001, where they remained an independent. In 2003, the Bulls moved to Conference USA, but they would leave for the Big East Conference in 2005. The Big East eventually became the American Athletic Conference in 2013 as part of the major college football realignment. The football team plays its home games in Raymond James Stadium, also the home field of the National Football League's Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
On November 16, 2002, USF beat #25 Bowling Green State University, its first victory over a ranked opponent.  September 24, 2005, USF surprised #9 ranked Louisville for its first victory over a Big East conference foe. As a result, USF received its first-ever votes in the AP college football poll. South Florida received increased press coverage for their upsets of Top 25 ranked teams such as West Virginia (2006, 2007, 2009), Auburn (2007), Kansas (2008) and Florida State (2009).
On September 16, 2007, a week after defeating Auburn, USF was nationally ranked for the first time in the young program's history. The AP poll listed USF at #23, while the USA Today Coaches Poll had the Bulls at #24. This was an NCAA record, as USF achieved its first Top 25 ranking faster than any other Division I-A school in the modern era. Since becoming a bowl-eligible Division I-A member in 2001, the Bulls were ranked after 104 AP Polls during the 4th week of their seventh season. Boise State had the previous record, getting ranked after 115 AP Polls during the 13th week of its seventh year as a bowl-eligible Division I-A member.  On October 14, 2007, after the AP, Coaches', and BCS rankings were released, the Bulls were ranked #2, #3, and #2 respectively, the highest ranked the school's football program has ever been. However, on Thursday, October 18, the Bulls lost to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights in a 30-27 upset in Piscataway, New Jersey. Two more losses followed, knocking the Bulls out of the college rankings. The Bulls rebounded to finish the 2007 season 9–3, ranked #21 in the BCS standings, and earning a spot in the Brut Sun Bowl. The Bulls, however, lost to the Oregon Ducks by a score of 56–21 in that contest.
On September 12, 2008, the Bulls defeated #11 ranked Kansas 37-34 at Raymond James Stadium. USF would win its next two games, getting to 5-0, and being ranked #10 in the AP Poll, before losing to Pittsburgh 26-21. The Bulls would finish the season 7-5, which earned them a spot in the inaugural St. Petersburg Bowl against the Memphis Tigers, which they would win 41-14.
On September 26, 2009, USF defeated in-state rival, #18 ranked Florida State, 17-7 at Doak Campbell Stadium. On October 4, 2009, the Bulls entered the AP rankings for the first time in the 2009-10 season, coming at #23 after beating Syracuse 34-20. The following week, they lost to the highly favored #8 ranked Cincinnati Bearcats. The Bulls would get back into the AP Poll a few weeks later after a 30-19 victory over #20 West Virginia, however for the second time in three years, Rutgers would defeat a ranked Bulls team, scoring a 31-0 victory on November 12, 2009, and the Bulls would fall from the AP Poll. The Bulls would finish the season 8-5 and earn a spot in the International Bowl against the Northern Illinois Huskies. The Bulls would go on to win 27-3.
Leavitt was fired on January 8, 2010 after an investigation alleged that, during halftime of a game against Louisville, he grabbed a player by the shoulder pads and struck him twice across the face. The investigation also claimed that Leavitt interfered with the investigation by telling several coaches and players to change their stories. Leavitt maintains he never struck the player, but was merely trying to console him, and after a wrongful termination suit against USF, the school eventually settled with Leavitt for $2.75 million.
On January 14, 2010, Skip Holtz was hired away from East Carolina and named the team's second head coach. The Bulls went 8-5 in Holtz's first season, finishing it off with a 31-26 Meineke Car Care Bowl victory over Clemson. USF started the 2011 season on a high note, defeating #16 Notre Dame 23-20 at Notre Dame Stadium. The Bulls reached #16 in the AP Poll after starting the season 4-0, but a 44-17 loss to Pittsburgh would drop them from the rankings. The Bulls would struggle for the rest of season, finishing with a record of 5-7, and failing to qualify for a bowl game for the first time in 7 seasons. The Bulls' 2012 was its worst to date, as the team finished 3-9.
On December 8, 2012, USF announced that Willie Taggart, who previously coached at Western Kentucky, would be the third Head Coach in USF football history. The Bulls struggled in Taggart's first year, posting a 2-10 record, however, the team improved slightly in his second year, finishing 4-8. Taggart finished his third season at USF 8-5 with a loss in the Miami Beach Bowl to Western Kentucky. In Week 5 of 2016 against Cincinnati, Marlon Mack passed Andre Hall to become the leading rusher in program history. Two weeks later, in a Week 7 game against UConn, Mack passed B.J. Daniels to become the program leader in rushing touchdowns. During their Week 9 game against #22 Navy, the Bulls set a school record for rushing yards in a game, racking up 412 yards in a 52–45 victory. The Bulls broke that record two weeks later in their Week 11 game against Memphis, rushing for 416 yards in a 49–42 victory. Also in that game, the Bulls broke the school record for offensive touchdowns in a season (58). In a Week 12 game against SMU, Quinton Flowers passed Matt Grothe to become the school leader in single-season total offense. The Bulls secured their first 10-win season after a 48–31 victory over UCF in Week 13. During that game, Quinton Flowers set the school record for single season rushing yards (1,425), passing the mark Marlon Mack set in 2015. On November 30, 2016, Quniton Flowers was named the American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Year, which is the first such award in school history. The Bulls ended their season with a 46–39 OT victory over South Carolina in the Birmingham Bowl on December 29, 2016. On January 12, 2017, Quinton Flowers was named the 2017 College Football Performance Awards National Performer of the Year. Taggart left after the season to become the coach at Oregon.
USF hired Charlie Strong as their new head coach on December 11, 2016. The 2017 Bulls earned their second straight 10 win season after beating Texas Tech in the Birmingham Bowl. The Bulls started 2018 with a 7-0 record, but did not win another game and finished 7-6. Strong was fired after the 2019 campaign, finishing 4-8.
The birth of the college basketball program at the University of South Florida was in 1971. The first game was a 74–73 victory at Stetson University. The season ended with eight wins and 17 losses. Since 1980, home games have been played at the USF Sun Dome.
USF Director of Athletics Mark Harlan announced the appointment of Brian Gregory as the 10th head coach of the USF men's basketball program on March 14, 2017.
Gregory, who has previously led programs at Georgia Tech (2011–16) and Dayton (2003–11) and spent nearly a decade as an assistant coach under Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo, brings nearly 250 career head coaching wins and six postseason appearances, including the 2010 NIT championship, to Tampa. 
The women's head coach is Jose Fernandez. Fernandez arrived in Tampa in April 2000, as a women's basketball assistant coach and was officially named head coach on December 14, 2000. As head coach at USF, he has guided the Bulls to five-straight postseason tournaments and to the cusp of bringing his program into the upper echelon of the Big East Conference. Under his tutelage, USF advanced to the program's first-ever NCAA Tournament during the 2005-06 season, and to 10 postseason tournaments in 11 years after the Bulls had recorded just three winning seasons, all 14-13 records, in the 25 years prior.
Fernandez has also guided USF to eight 20-win campaigns — 21-11 in 2004-05, 21-12 in 2006-07, 27-10 in 2008-09, 22-11 in 2012-13, 23-13 in 2013-14, 27-8 in 2014-15, 24-10 in 2015-16, 24-9 in 2016-17, and 26-8 in 2017-18; in his career. On April 4, 2009, Fernandez led the team to their first-ever post season championship with a 75-71 win over the Kansas Jayhawks in the WNIT. Fernandez also won USF's first women's basketball NCAA Tournament game, beating Texas Tech in the first round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament. The Bulls have made the NCAA Tournament six times and the Women's National Invitation Tournament nine times in their history.
The program has won five conference titles and made 13 NCAA Tournaments. 
The Bulls men's cross country team began in 1990 and has won seven conference championships, including one in their inaugural season, and nine individual conference championship.  They have qualified for nationals three times. The men's team is coached by Erik Jenkins along with the women's team and the men's and women's track and field teams.
South Florida's women's cross country has five conference titles, back to back NCAA South Regional championships in 1999 and 2000, and one individual conference championship. They have qualified for nationals five times. 
The men's golf coach is Steve Bradley, the former men's golf assistant coach from Florida State University. The team has won 16 conference championships, including 11 straight from 1979-89:
- Sun Belt Conference (11): 1979–89
- Big East Conference (1): 2013
- American Athletic Conference (4): 2015–18
The women's golf coach is Erika Brennan, who was hired in 2018.
They have won 6 conference championships and a Florida women's golf state title. 
A nationally recognized women's sailing program at USF is coached by Allison Jolly, gold medalist in the first Olympic women's sailing event at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. Varsity women's sailing is ranked as one of the Top 30 Collegiate Sailing Teams in the nation. As sailing is not an NCAA sanctioned sport, USF Sailing is a member of the South Atlantic Intercollegiate Sailing Association (SAISA). The team has a waterfront facility on Bayboro Harbor on the University of South Florida's St. Petersburg campus called the Haney Landing Sailing Center. It is the only varsity sport based on USF's St. Pete campus.  The team won the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association Sloop championship in 2009. 
Men's soccer was the first NCAA sport ever played at USF, beginning in 1965. The Bulls won the Division II state championship in 1966. 
The Bulls have made the NCAA Tournament 21 times (including the Elite Eight three of those times) and have won 14 conference championships.
The Bulls women's soccer team was founded in 1995. The team is led by coach Denise Schilte Brown, who became the second coach in the program's history. She joined the program in December 2006 and had previously coached at Virginia Commonwealth and University of Maryland-Baltimore County. In 2010 the women's soccer teamed earned their first berth to the NCAA tournament.They have since qualified for the tournament in 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2019, and have won their conference 6 times.
The Bulls softball team began play in 1985. The team has made fifteen NCAA Tournament appearances in 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2018, and 2019. The team has made one Women's College World Series in 2012. Ken Eriksen, who played baseball for USF from 1979-83, has been the head coach of the team since 1996 and is the winningest coach across all sports in USF history with 976 as of the end of the 2019 season. Eriksen is also the current manager of the United States women's national softball team. 
Men's head coach Matt Hill joined USF during June 2012, replacing long-time coach Don Barr (1992-2012). Hill spent five years at Mississippi State as an assistant coach before coming to USF, and coached the Bulls to a conference championship in 2014. In 2015 the USF Men's Tennis Team captured once again the conference championship after beating Tulsa in the finals. During the 2015 NCAA team championships USF beat Boise State in the first round and number 15 seed Virginia Tech in the second round to advance to the Sweet 16 for the first time in program history. USF was eliminated by Baylor after an intense dual match that the Bears ended up winning 4-1.
The women's team is coached by Cristina Moros. They have won 13 conference titles and made 11 NCAA tournaments.
USF men's track and field athletes have won 29 individual indoor and 56 outdoor individual conference champions.  They, along with the women's team and cross country teams, are coached by Erik Jenkins.
The Bulls women's track and field team has won one indoor and three outdoor conference championships, along with producing 42 individual indoor and 64 individual outdoor conference champions. 
Jolene Shepardson was named the 12th head coach in USF volleyball history in 2020.
The Bulls have made the NCAA Tournament 7 times.
USF's only team NCAA National Championship in school history came in women's swimming at the Division II level in 1985.  The 1984-85 Bulls won five individual national titles, two relay national titles and racked up 35 All-America honors.  All 10 members of the team as well as the coaching staff were inducted into the USF Athletic Hall of Fame's inaugural class in 2009.
Also a member of the USF Athletic Hall of Fame, Joe Lewkowicz of the men's swimming team won the first individual national title in school history with the 1969 200 yard butterfly event. The 12 time All American also won the 1972 championship with the rest of the team in the 400-yard medley relay.  The program as a whole won seven individual and relay national titles during its existence, and finished as national runners up in 1971.  Financial difficulties, along with the sport not being sponsored by the Sun Belt Conference, led to both the men's and women's teams being cut after the 1986-87 season. 
Fellow USF Hall of Famer Michelle Scarborough also won two individual National Titles with the Bulls, the only NCAA Division I titles in school history, winning back to back championships in Rifle in 1989 and 1990.  The USF Men's and Women's Rifle teams were cut in the 1990s due to budget concerns.
The USF Bulls Rugby Football Club was founded in 1969. USF plays rugby in the South Independent conference against local rivals such as Central Florida and Florida State. The Bulls were the USA Rugby South champions in 2009 and 2011. The Bulls were promoted to Division I college rugby in 2011. The Bulls play sevens in the fall, and fifteens in the winter and spring.  USF Rugby offers a limited number of scholarships for rugby student-athletes. 
The Ice Bulls club team were founded in 1989 and play in American Collegiate Hockey Association Division III in the Southern Collegiate Hockey Conference. They have made Nationals five times, and most recently won the SCHC championship in 2020 to qualify for Nationals for a sixth time, but the ACHA canceled the National Tournament due to the COVID-19 pandemic.   The Ice Bulls play their home games at AdventHealth Center Ice in Wesley Chapel, Florida and all home games are free to the public. 
USF's club cricket team immediately found great success after being established in 2009.  Between their inaugural year and 2015, the Bulls made seven American College Cricket final fours and five national championship games, capped off by winning back to back national championships in 2014 and 2015.  The Bulls returned to the ACC final four in 2017 and 2018 as well. 
The University of South Florida Athletic Hall of Fame was established in 2009 to recognize and perpetuate the memory of student-athletes, teams, coaches and administrators who have made demonstrably outstanding and significant contributions to the success, tradition and heritage of USF Athletics, and who demonstrate the character and values that define the highest principles of sport. Induction in the University of South Florida Athletic Hall of Fame is the highest honor afforded by the USF Athletics Department. 
- Bill Mann, Men's and Women's Swimming 1979-87 (inducted 2009)
- Lou Manganiello, Women's Swimming (assistant) (inducted 2009)
- Dan Holcomb, Men's Soccer 1965-86 (inducted 2010)
- Sherry Bedingfield, Women's Tennis 1980-2002 (inducted 2010 as both player and coach)
- Robert Grindey, Men's Swimming 1965-78 (inducted 2011)
- Bobby Paschal, Men's Basketball, 1986-96 (inducted 2013)
- Charlie Bradley, Men's Basketball 1982-85 (inducted 2009)
- Alicia McHugh, Women's Swimming 1982-85 (inducted 2009)
- Nancy Bercaw, Women's Swimming 1982-85 (inducted 2009)
- Merit Greaves, Women's Swimming 1983-85 (inducted 2009)
- Margaret Mortell, Women's Swimming 1983-86 (inducted 2009)
- Suzanne Crenshaw, Women's Swimming 1984-87 (inducted 2009)
- Susan Duncan, Women's Swimming 1985-87 (inducted 2009)
- Tracey Hayes, Women's Swimming 1985-87 (inducted 2009)
- Dawn Hewett, Women's Swimming 1985-87 (inducted 2009)
- Julie Muller, Women's Swimming 1985-87 (inducted 2009)
- Jonie Troupe, Women's Swimming 1985-87 (inducted 2009)
- Wanda Guyton, Women's Basketball 1984-89 (inducted 2009)
- Michelle Scarborough, Women's Rifle 1989-90 (inducted 2009)
- Joe Lewkowicz, Men's Swimming 1969-72 (inducted 2010)
- Sherry Bedingfield, Women's Tennis 1970-72 (inducted 2010 as both player and coach)
- Ross Gload, Baseball 1995-97 (inducted 2010)
- Kerine Black, Women's Track and Field 1997-2001 (inducted 2010)
- Fergus Hooper, Men's Soccer 1974-77 (inducted 2011)
- Radenko Dobras, Men's Basketball 1988-92 (inducted 2011)
- Monica Triner, Softball 1996-99 (inducted 2011)
- Anthony Henry, Football 1997-2000 (inducted 2011)
- Michelle Collier, Volleyball 1998-2002 (inducted 2011)
- Chucky Atkins, Men's Basketball 1992-96 (inducted 2012)
- Jessica Dickson, Women's Basketball 2003-07 (inducted 2012)
- Chris Heintz, Baseball 1993-96 (inducted 2013)
- Marquel Blackwell, Football 1999-2002 (inducted 2013)
- Dayana Octavien, Women's Track and Field 2000-04 (inducted 2013)
- Shantia Grace, Women's Basketball 2005-09 (inducted 2019)
- George Selvie, Football 2006-09 (inducted 2019)
- Sara Nevins, Softball 2011-14 (inducted 2019)
USF's main rival is the University of Central Florida Knights, who are located 98 miles northeast in Orlando.  The first meeting between the two schools was a men's basketball game in 1972, where the South Florida Golden Brahmans beat the Florida Technological University Knights of the Pegasus 115-96.  The close proximity and the schools being founded around the same time (South Florida in 1956 and Central Florida in 1963) made the schools naturally become rivals. The two schools became conference foes for the first time in 2013, when UCF joined the American Athletic Conference.
The rivalry was officially recognized by both schools on September 21, 2016 when it was announced that a rivalry series between all 14 sports that both schools compete in would begin. Each sport is worth six total points, and sports where the teams meet head-to-head multiple times in the regular season will have the six points divided by the number of games played (for example, each regular season basketball game is worth three points). For sports where the teams compete head-to-head, only regular season events are counted for points, meaning if the schools face each other in a conference or NCAA tournament no points will be awarded for War on I-4 standings. For the sports where the teams don't directly compete against each other (track and field, cross country, and golf), the team that places higher in the American Athletic Conference championship for the given sport is awarded the six points.  As of 2020, USF leads UCF in the all time series for football (6-5), men's basketball (23-16), women's basketball (28-13), baseball (71-67), softball (18-12), and men's soccer (25-7-4). UCF only leads in women's soccer (11-4-4), but UCF has won all three overall War on I-4 titles since 2016, and led USF in the 2019-2020 edition of the rivalries, but the title was not awarded due to spring sports being canceled by the NCAA because of COVID-19.
USF also has a men's soccer rivalry with the crosstown University of Tampa Spartans. The rivalry is named after the original Tampa Bay Rowdies who were the first professional sports franchise in Tampa. The winner of the annual match receives the trophy the now defunct Rowdies won in Soccer Bowl '75. The Bulls lead the all time series 24-10-3.
Located on the Tampa campus, the USF Athletic District is the home for Bulls intercollegiate sports.  The district includes the Lee Roy Selmon Athletic Center, the Corbett Soccer Stadium, the Frank Morsani Football Practice Complex, the Pam & Les Muma Basketball Practice Center, the Yuengling Center, The Claw, the USF Baseball Stadium, the USF Softball Stadium, the USF Track and Field Stadium, the Corral, and the USF Varsity Tennis Courts. 
Opened in 2004, the Lee Roy Selmon Athletic Center is the main hub for USF Athletics.  In 2012, the facility was dedicated to the late Lee Roy Selmon, a Pro Football Hall of Fame member and former Director of USF Athletics.  Selmon is considered by many to be the "Father of USF Football."  The 104,000 square foot facility houses all USF sports teams, except for men's and women's basketball, sailing, and volleyball.  The building features a large strength and conditioning center, a sports medicine clinic, and an Academic Enrichment Center complete with a computer study lab, a library, study lounges, and academic counseling. 
The Yuengling Center on the Tampa campus is the home facility of the men's and women's basketball teams and the women's volleyball team. The first event held in the facility was a basketball game in 1980.  Since the opening of the arena, it has been the site for USF Commencement Ceremonies, orientation sessions, and other major university events.  The facility has also played host to a number of outside events including sports and entertainment events, consumer shows, religious services, conventions, rodeos, youth sports camps, gymnastics and cheerleading competitions, lectures, and political rallies.  The venue is also one of the top concert spots in the Tampa Bay region, having hosted musicians like Elton John, Florence and the Machine, Frank Sinatra, Heart, Sting, and more. 
The USF football team began its inaugural football game in 1997 at Houlihan's Stadium (Tampa Stadium) with an 80-3 win over Kentucky Wesleyan College.  The stadium is home to the professional football team the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, making USF one of only a few American college teams to play in an NFL stadium.  Located ten miles away from the USF Tampa campus, the stadiumas a capacity of more than 65,000 people. 
The Herd of Thunder, often called HOT or the Pride of the Bay, is the athletic band of the South Florida Bulls, including the show band, pep band, and marching band ensembles, although it is often used to refer simply to the marching band. It was founded in 1999, two years after USF fielded its first football team.
USF is known in the cheerleading world and has a strong co-ed team and all-girls squad. In 2010, the All-Girl squad finished 3rd at UCA nationals, and routinely finishes in the top five. The Co-Ed squad is one of the top 15 programs in the nation to cheer for.
The USF Sun Dolls are an all-girl dance team that perform at USF football and basketball games, in addition to competing in the annual Universal Dance Association College Nationals.  The USF Cheerleading program consists of two teams — a co-ed team and a competitive all-girl squad.  The all-girl squad continually ranks among the top five competitive college squads in the nation. 
The USF Winter Guard consistently places in the top of the annual Winter Guard International World Championships, taking home the silver medal in the Independent Open category in 2012 and the bronze medal in the Independent A category in 2006. 
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