As I noted in my preseason preview of the University of South Florida Bulls, this will be the year they finally break out and easily get into the NCAA Tournament. With wins over Tennessee Tech, Bethune-Cookman, Bowling Green, and Stetson, the Bulls find themselves at a perfect 4-0. However, they are about to receive a massive test.
This evening, Marcus Smart and the No. 7 Oklahoma State Cowboys will come into town. Coming off of a 39-point performance, Smart and company will be looking to stay hot, traveling to South Florida for the 7:00 p.m. ET tipoff.
Junior point guard Anthony Collins has returned from injury for the Bulls, and adds the stability that the Bulls will need at that position in order to gain that postseason berth. In the two games he has been back, he’s put up an average of 11 points, 2.5 rebounds and 5.5 assists in 29 minutes. Look for those numbers all to increase in the coming weeks.
Corey Allen Jr. leads the team in scoring, recording 16.5 points per game, and Victor Rudd is second on the team with 15 points per contest. Allen Jr. has also impressively helped out with distributing the ball in Collins’ absence, recording a 21-10 assist-to-turnover ratio. John Egbunu averages 7.3 points and 8.3 rebounds per game, and adds an inside presence that every squad needs in order to win.
Oklahoma State ranks second in the NCAA, averaging 102 points per game, and South Florida only averages 77.5, good for the No. 137. While it certainly doesn’t look like a favorable matchup for the Bulls, this is an opportunity for them to show everyone that they’ve progressed and are a team to be reckoned with.