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Zebold: Nicholas, Lamar Happy to Be Back Home at USF


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Nicholas, Lamar Happy to Be Back Home at USF

 

By TOM ZEBOLD

USF Senior Writer

 

TAMPA, AUG. 13, 2015 – Head coach Willie Taggart continues to welcome former Bulls back with open arms and two stars from the past have jumped at the opportunity to join his staff.

 

Former standout linebacker Stephen Nicholas is relishing his role as USF’s new defensive analyst, while 2010 Big East Special Teams Player of the Year Lindsey Lamar has returned as a graduate assistant.

 

“It feels great to be back around your old stomping yards and to be back around the team, the atmosphere and the facilities,” Lamar said. “It feels like I’m back at home.”

 

Nicholas still ranks fourth on USF’s all-time list with 326 tackles after playing for the Bulls from 2002-06. Nicholas went on to spend seven NFL seasons with the Atlanta Falcons and he became a regular at USF practices this spring.

 

“My wife was like, ‘Where you going today?’ I was like, ‘I’m just going to check on the Bulls a little bit,’” said Nicholas, who traveled from Orlando each day. “I drove on up and came to a practice. Then I came again, and then I came again.”

 

Nicholas now gets to break down film with the defense daily as a member of the staff and his energy around the building has been contagious.

 

“He was an awesome player here and an awesome player in the NFL,” linebacker Auggie Sanchez said. “What more could you want?”

 

Lamar also is excited to be back in Green and Gold after playing for the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats the past two seasons. The 24-year-old Tampa native reached out to Taggart about getting into coaching and now Lamar gets to pick up gems of knowledge from the entire staff.

 

“It’s a lot of long hours learning from Coach (Ron) Dugans, Coach Taggart, Coach (David) Reaves and all those guys. It’s been pretty cool,” said Lamar, who also is pursuing a graduate degree in adult education.

 

Lamar said it has been great getting to know Taggart and USF’s leading man appreciates both former players’ willingness to give back to a program that’s hungry for success.

 

“It’s always great to have some former players in your program, not just to be there, but to help and really be a part of turning this program around,” Taggart said. “Those guys are very passionate about USF and very thankful for what USF has done for them. All they want to do is help out.”

 

...

 

 

Quote of the Day

“The sharks are out. We’re waiting to smell the blood.” – Stephen Nicholas on USF’s “Bull Sharks” defense.

 

 

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This is how great PROGRAMS are built. This is how you build a sense of tradition and family with recruits/players. I hope it is a continuing trend for us as the first wave of "great" Bulls football players begin to look for second careers. 

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Hopefully, this will continue with other alums.  I'd love to see Selvie and JPP on the staff some day.

 

Selvie yes, JPP no. And it has nothing to do with blowing off his hand. The guy isn't the smartest guy in the world and I want smart coaches.

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Hopefully, this will continue with other alums.  I'd love to see Selvie and JPP on the staff some day.

 

Selvie yes, JPP no. And it has nothing to do with blowing off his hand. The guy isn't the smartest guy in the world and I want smart coaches.

 

 

Fair enough

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