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    Celebrate Will Weatherford Day on September 8

    By Brad Meyer | Published 09/06/2022 | USF Athletics Facilities

    Tampa, FL – After last Saturday, who doesn’t need something to celebrate?

    Across the USF Athletics landscape there is quite of bit of uncertainty and “show me” or “I’ll believe it when I see it” mentality.  Understandably so.  Our efforts to be competitive have created periods of optimism followed by seasons of grave pessimism.  

    When it comes to facilities we’ve heard a lot in past years, but we haven’t seen a lot until the Indoor Performance Facility began construction last fall.  That was after a lengthy delay, mostly related to fundraising challenges with a changing fan base.

    The football program, clearly the key revenue driver for Athletics, seemed abandoned by previous administrations.  After an exciting birth 25 years ago today, that would be unthinkable.  That era saw the new upstart program defeat teams such as Louisville, Auburn, and FSU while more and more fans came to experience USF Football. After a first-ever bowl in 2005, just nine years in existence, the potential seemed limitless.

    But, times change.  A new conference and four coaches later we find ourselves behind and perhaps stagnated, seemingly destined for whatever hand the football gods were going to deal us.  And they hadn’t been very kind.

    But on September 8, 2021, Bulls coaches, players, administrators and fans were already feeling a little pick-me-up in a ceremonial groundbreaking for the new Indoor Performance Facility when USF Board of Trustees Chair Will Weatherford proclaimed, “I’m going to say it – I for one think Bulls Nation deserves to have a stadium on this campus…and I’m here to tell you we are going to do it”.

    What?

    Gutsy.

    To have the Chairman of the Board of Trustees come out and say that was earth-shaking (or maybe that was the offensive line doing some ceremonial shovel work).  So unprecedented, I reacted as I had beenWWI.jpg conditioned through past experience.  Okay, I’ll say it too.  We’ll see what happens. Yeah…

    My pessimism had me thinking this will be the thing we discuss and cry poor about for the next 15 years.  We got that covered.  This poor guy, Will Weatherford, let emotions get hold of him.  He splashed this announcement out there and he can’t take it back. 

    So being the broken-hearted, wise guy I am I put on the TheBullsPen.com a reverse countdown, or a countup to a stadium.  I figured it would be fun to say Oh look, the count up is now at 6,191 days... 

    But unlike past excursions into this space, USF was taking action.  Will Weatherford meant it.  It wasn’t to buy time or to fill a press release.  He put his name and face all over this effort.  And he has aligned the right parties.

    It seemed appropriate to me on the one-year anniversary (Thursday) of his statements that we honor Mr. Weatherford.  Afterall, we just completed another Board of Trustees meeting that discussed the stadium and named a design firm, Barton Malow (Populous).  This thing is moving.

    I can eat crow, pull my head out of my hinter region, and offer a mea culpa.  Ok, I appear to be wrong.  

    I am wrong.

    Many are learning they too were wrong.

    Thursday is hereby declared Will Weatherford Day. 

    In 23 years of message board management, I’ve never declared a holiday – even after beating WVU in a sold out Raymond James Stadium.  So this is exciting.

    It’s a gift giving holiday too (no day off work, however).  I’d suggest we all make a donation to the USF Bulls Club in honor of Mr. Weatherford’s boldness, courage and leadership.  It’s on 9/8, how does $98 sound?  Some donors search for a symbolic amount, so it could also be 9,082,021 and that would go a long way.  I'm sure anything between $98 and $9,082,021 would be appreciated.

    It was a historic day.  We are making progress.  Let's have a little fun with it and send a gift to the Fund if you can.

     

    Video of IPF groundbreaking event:

     




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    Heck yes! Things have turned positive for USF ever since that announcement of the OCS. We are going to be fine in the long run. Go Bulls!!

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    I can't help but interject some dry, unintelligible humor in everything I do, but I mean it.  Weatherford dropped this on us a year ago and it is working out.  9/8 is on my calendar to celebrate - EVERY YEAR.  USF looked bold, courageous - kind of that swagger we had when toppling giants.   

    Yeah we lost Saturday and yes, there are reasons for both an OCS and color mismatched pro stadium with a ship in it.  Either way, I get on board with winning.  Weatherford and his team including Michael Kelly is winning.  They deserve some support.  I'm with them.

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    Your article didn't mention wins vs ND and Clemson but those don't fit your narrative 🥵

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    Actually forgot them both.  Notre Dame - I was there for (even though it doesn't fit my narrative) and Clemson wasn't that great, their brand is great now.  I also left out Pitt (2001) which was monumental and it fit my narrative, but most fans would think I was talking about crummy Pitt (not my narrative).  I left out Kansas because while they were ranked (and fit my narrative), I guess most new Bulls fans wouldn't know about that one either. Even Bowling Green...  

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    10 minutes ago, CousinRicky said:

    Your article didn't mention wins vs ND and Clemson but those don't fit your narrative 🥵

    Lol that was right before the Holtz New Era became the Holtz New Error!

    • Haha 1

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    3 minutes ago, Brad said:

    Actually forgot them both.  Notre Dame - I was there for (even though it doesn't fit my narrative) and Clemson wasn't that great, their brand is great now.  I also left out Pitt (2001) which was monumental and it fit my narrative, but most fans would think I was talking about crummy Pitt (not my narrative).  I left out Kansas because while they were ranked (and fit my narrative), I guess most new Bulls fans wouldn't know about that one either. Even Bowling Green...  

    Notre Dame may have been the first time we met unless we met at Sun Bowl Eve.

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    35 minutes ago, Brad said:

    Even Bowling Green...  

    Ranked and coached by Urban Meyer 

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    19 minutes ago, Mission9 said:

    Ranked and coached by Urban Meyer 

    Great win by USF & Leavitt’s defense shutting down Urban’s offense. Urban asked Leavitt after the game how he was able to shut down his offense & Leavitt just told him he would never tell him how lol 

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    16 minutes ago, Bull Awakening said:

    Great win by USF & Leavitt’s defense shutting down Urban’s offense. Urban asked Leavitt after the game how he was able to shut down his offense & Leavitt just told him he would never tell him how lol 

    They had scored quite a few points that season. Holding them to 7 was impressive 

    • Go Bulls! 1

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