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USF landing prominent opponents continues to irk UCF

Florida Football Insiders

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The rivalry known as “The War on I-4” is not just USF and UCF doing battle on the football field. No, it stretches into all aspects, including the Knights being unhappy, as the Bulls continue to land big name prominent football opponents for their upcoming out of conference schedules.

As we wrote earlier this week, USF successfully got Alabama to agree to a three-game series and will even have the Tide play the first game in Tampa coming in 2023.

They’ve done so, by offering to play two road games in exchange for the one home game or a “2 for 1,” as it’s known in college scheduling.  This is something that the Knights, and in specific, their athletic director, Danny White, disdain.

White’s been on the record for the last two off-seasons that UCF does not want to engage in the 2 for 1 practice to give away out of conference games on their schedule simply for large paydays. Particularly, when the second road game, is simply a smaller payday to play the bigger school.

There are points for this on both sides, but the bottom line is: USF has gotten much more important opponents already lined up on their out-of-conference schedules than the Knights do, because their athletic director Michael Kelly has been doing savy negotiating the past year on the job. In total, the Bulls have 17 “Power Five” opponents for out of conference games in the next 10 seasons.

Further, USF has already had Florida State and Miami agreed to play them in the past in “one for one” home and away game situations. The Bulls, in fact most recently hosted Florida State just back in the 2016 season.

And further still, USF previously played a road game in Gainesville and has since landed a deal with the Gators to play Florida twice at the Swamp and get a home game at Raymond James Stadium.

What this translates to is: that despite all of the posturing by UCF, their media and fans, the Bulls will have hosted: Florida State, Miami and Florida (the three most prominent programs in the state) at Raymond James Stadium.

All this before UCF will have ever hosted any of them in a home game in Orlando.

As national sports radio vaven Jim Rome often echoes on his shows, “That’s called Scoreboard,” for the Bulls.

Now, you take into account the deal with Alabama and the Crimson Tide agreeing to play USF in Tampa first, and it’s obvious that it will enhance USF’s national notoriety and schedule strength.

This subject is one that noted Orlando Sports columnist and radio host Mike Bianchi wrote about in the Orlando Sentinel on Saturday. Bianchi centered his piece on how UCF makes more, currently, on their home games than USF does due lesser attendance, etc. for the Bulls.

However, what UCF and their media members conveniently leave out is the Knights had an 0-12 football program in 2015. That year UCF “announced” their per game average at 26,000. However, at the end of that disastrous year, including the Knights blowout loss to conclude it to, USF, they had 30,000 or more empty seats on several occasions.

And even with Scott Frost getting them back to a six and six respectable season the following year, they still played frequently in a half empty Spectrum Stadium. And, they weren’t making anywhere near the revenue that Bianchi cites from the last two years of their winning streak and national attention.

No, the larger point is that while the Bulls and the Knight’s winning and losing may come and go over the next few years (and so too will attendance), there’s only one program, USF, that is doing deals to play the best teams in the SEC and the ACC, right now.

Yes UCF can declare themselves “National Champions,” like they did two years ago, and “hem and haw,” about trying to get one to one scheduling concessions with the biggest programs in the South.

However, hemming and hawing isn’t getting it done.

USF getting the bigger schools to “put pen to paper” and come to play them in Tampa, is.

USF Bulls

Report- Alabama will hire Charlie Strong as consultant

Florida Football Insiders

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Former USF coach Charlie Strong has decided on a new role for the upcoming 2020 season, and it won’t be in Gainesville.

ESPN college football insider Chris Low reported Tuesday morning that Strong has agreed to join Nick Saban’s staff at Alabama as a defensive “consultant” for this season

As we wrote last week, Strong had visited Saban and the Tide about the possible position on his staff, while considering a similar opportunity to join either Dan Mullen’s Gators staff or a couple of others in a consulting role. None of this will affect the nearly $3 million that USF still owes him as the buyout on the final two years of his contract.

Strong was fired after the Bulls collapsed losing their final four games to finish 4 – 8 this season. They were beaten by 27 or more points five times this year, including the last two losses to Memphis and rival UCF. This combined with the Bulls having lost their final six games, including their bowl game last year, meant that Strong had lost 14 of his final 18 games.

USF hired Clemson Co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott earlier about a week later and gave him a 5-year, $12 million deal to become a first-time head coach in FBS football.

There had been some debate about Strong’s buyout being the amount of compensation that was remaining on his original five-year contract that he signed when he took the job in December of 2016 after being fired by the University of Texas. That contract called for Strong to be paid to $2. 5 million on average for 2020 and 2021.

However, USF informed Strong in his termination letter that the amount would be approximately $3 million under clauses in his deal.

Saban has a history of taking in former head coaches to come to Bama and observe and assist as a consultant with either his offense or defense. He’s done this for the last two years with former Tennessee coach Butch Jones and obviously, took in both Lane Kiffin and Steve Sarkisian both of whom had been fired as coaches by USC at different stages.

Strong is known is an outstanding defensive coach from his previous days, as the Gators defensive coordinator under Urban Meyer. He later went on to success at the University of Louisville before taking The the Texas head coaching job in 2014.

Strong was fired after three seasons in Austin in 2016, but immediately hired by USF to replace Willie Taggart.

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USF Bulls

Former USF coach Strong to be consultant for Alabama?

Florida Football Insiders

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Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

And intriguing item popped up Friday morning involving former USF head coach Charlie Strong and him visiting Nick Saban the Alabama football program.

According to Alabama Insider and radio host, Aaron Suttles, Strong, who was dismissed last December after his third season with the Bulls, was in Tuscaloosa Thursday meeting with Saban and his staff:

Strong had also been reportedly talking with the University of Florida about a possible consultant role, which likely would not affect the nearly $3 million that USF still owes him as the buyout on the final two years of his contract.

Strong was fired after the Bulls collapsed losing their final four games to finish 4 – 8 this season. They were beaten by 27 or more points five times this year, including the last two losses to Memphis and rival UCF. This combined with the Bulls having lost their final six games, including their bowl game last year, meant that Strong had lost 14 of his final 18 games.

USF hired Clemson Co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott earlier about a week later and gave him a 5-year, $12 million deal to become a first-time head coach in FBS football.

There had been some debate about Strong’s buyout being the amount of compensation that was remaining on his original five-year contract that he signed when he took the job in December of 2016 after being fired by the University of Texas. That contract called for Strong to be paid to $2. 5 million on average for 2020 and 2021.

However, USF informed Strong in his termination letter that the amount would be approximately $3 million under clauses in his deal.

Saban has a history of taking in former head coaches to come to Bama and observe and assist as a consultant with either his offense or defense. He’s done this for the last two years with former Tennessee coach Butch Jones and obviously, took in both Lane Kiffin and Steve Sarkisian both of whom had been fired as coaches by USC at different stages.

Strong is known is an outstanding defensive coach from his previous days, as the Gators defensive coordinator under Urban Meyer. He later went on to success at the University of Louisville before taking The the Texas head coaching job in 2014.

Strong was fired after three seasons in Austin in 2016, but immediately hired by USF to replace Willie Taggart

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