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Bulls Tabbed Second In America Preseason Poll;


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USF ATHLETICS 

 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DATE: OCT. 26, 2015

 

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Bulls Tabbed Second In America Preseason Poll;

Williams & Jenkins named all-conference first team

Bulls and defending NCAA Champion UConn atop conference poll, share all first-team preseason all-conference picks

 

TAMPA, OCT. 26, 2015  Senior guard Courtney Williams (Folkston, Ga.) was a unanimous first-team all-conference selection and the USF women’s basketball program, entering its 16thseason under Head Coach Jose Fernandez, was picked second behind only defending NCAA champion UConn in the preseason coaches poll released Monday at the American Athletic Conference Women’s Basketball Media Day in Orlando.

 

Ranked as high as No. 15 in preseason Top 25 polls, USF received one first place vote among conference coaches and was firmly voted second in the preseason poll with 91 points, well ahead of third place pick Temple with 76. UConn, which won its third-straight NCAA championship and ninth since 2000 last year in Tampa, received 10 first place votes and 100 points.

 

“We finished second in the league last year and we return five starters, which brings a great deal of expectation,” Fernandez said. “All the teams in this league have improved with the players they have returning and how they have recruited. I think we are definitely worthy of being picked where we are and now we have to prove it on the basketball floor.”

 

The Bulls and Huskies shared all five preseason first-team all-conference picks. Senior forward Alisia Jenkins(Statesboro, Ga.) was voted a first-team pick alongside Williams. Williams earned her second straight all-conference first-team selection last year after leading the conference in scoring at 20.3 ppg and finishing among the top 11 conference leaders in 10 categories. Jenkins was a second-team all-conference pick last year after leading the league in rebounding (11.3 rpg) and averaging a double-double with 12.8 ppg.

 

“They are very well deserved,” Fernandez said. “They are both seniors who will play their final year in the league and this is a great honor. I’m very happy for both of them.”

 

UConn’s Breanna Stewart, a two-time AP National Player of the Year and 2015 Wade Trophy winner, was voted the preseason American Conference Player of the Year. She was joined by teammates Moriah Jefferson and Morgan Tuck to complete the first-team. 

 

USF has also appeared in preseason top 25 polls by Lindy’s Sports (No. 22), ESPN (No. 21) and Athlon (No. 23) as USF picked up its first-ever preseason rankings in program history.

 

The 2015 American Conference Preseason Coaches Poll

1. UConn (10)            100

2. USF (1)                   91

3. Temple                   76

4. East Carolina         75

5. Tulane                    60

6. Tulsa                       56

7. Memphis                50

8. SMU                        29

9. UCF                         28

10. Cincinnati           22

11. Houston               18

 

Williams (Folkston, Ga.) returns after a stellar junior season that saw her lead The American in scoring (20.3 ppg) and finish among the top 11 conference leaders in 10 categories, including assists (7th, 3.3 apg), rebounds (8th, 7.5 rpg) and blocked shots (10th, 0.9 bpg). Williams broke Jessica Dickson’s (2005-06) USF season scoring record, posting 710 points for the ninth-best total in the nation. Williams recorded 20, 20-point games and broke 30 points twice as she secured a spot among 12 finalists for The Wade Trophy - women's basketball's version of the Heisman.

 

She enters her senior campaign fifth all-time on the USF career scoring chart with 1,541 points, 10th on the career rebounding chart (645) and 14th on the career assists chart (231). She is on pace to join Dickson as the Bulls’ second 2,000-point scorer in program history and become the first USF player ever to post 2,000 points, 800 rebounds and 300 assists.

 

Jenkins (Statesboro, Ga.) averaged a double-double in 2014-15 posting 12.8 points and 11.3 rebounds per game to go with 2.3 blocks. Her 23 points and 21 rebounds vs. Penn State were one of her 23 double-doubles on the year, which ranked fifth in the nation. She posted a USF season rebounding record with 397 while leading The American in rebounding and finishing ninth in scoring on the year. An all-around force, Jenkins also ranked third in blocked shots, fifth in field goal percentage (53.8%) and 12th in steals (1.6 spg) in the conference. 

 

Jenkins enters her senior season with 965 career rebounds and 993 career points, well on pace to shatter Wanda Guyton’s (1985-89) USF career rebounding record of 1,077 and join Guyton as just the second USF women’s basketball player to post 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds on her career.  She needs just seven points to become the Bulls’ 22nd 1,000-point scorer.

Jose Fernandez’s 2015 women’s basketball team returns all five starters, including All-American Candidate Courtney Williams, from a team that posted a 27-8 (15-3 American) record in 2014-15 and finished the season in the top 25 rankings. The squad finished second behind eventual NCAA champion UConn in the American Athletic Conference and made an exciting NCAA Tournament run that saw USF top LSU in front of 5,560 fans in the Sun Dome in the NCAA regional round.

In 2015-16, the Bulls will be hosting their toughest schedule yet, including the opening rounds of the Preseason WNIT, along with perennial powers Penn State, Chattanooga, Oklahoma State and UConn making trips to Tampa. Season tickets, starting at just $65, are available for purchase online at USFBullsTix.com, by phone at 1-800-GoBulls or in person at the Gate B ticket office of the Sun Dome, with single game tickets going on sale in late September.

USF has made 11 postseason tournament appearances and had three NCAA Tournament berths in Head Coach Jose Fernandez’s 15 seasons. The all-time winningest coach in program history, Fernandez has guided USF to six 20-win seasons, two WNIT final four appearances, the 2009 WNIT championship and won more than 260 games.

– #GoBulls –

 

 
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I'll enjoy watching this season, but man I really wish Courtney was a junior this year!

So do I. She and Jenkins will be sorely missed.

Both Courtney Williams and Alisia Jenkins were both named to the Preseason All-Conference 1st Team today. ‪#‎BullsUnite‬

 

 

Who do you think will try and replace Courtney next year?

 

Whomever it is, I doubt that any current player can fully step into her shoes.

 

Other players will have to pull more of their weight to offset her loss.

 
 
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They have a new freshman player, Kitija Laska, who played with the team in Spain and went like 9/10 from three pointers or something. Hopefully she and Ferreria will be able to shine this season and lead next season.

No doubt. I expect great things from both of them.

I hope the big JUCO we brought in will help against the bigger teams.

In a few weeks, we should have four new players sign. They are all pretty tall and talented.

Hopefully, we will have an even better year this season and get some of the TOP 100 players who are currently listing USF among their favorites. Up to this point, we haven't been able to be competitive in recruiting against the better basketball programs.

 

 

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No doubt. I expect great things from both of them.

I hope the big JUCO we brought in will help against the bigger teams.

In a few weeks, we should have four new players sign. They are all pretty tall and talented.

Hopefully, we will have an even better year this season and get some of the TOP 100 players who are currently listing USF among their favorites. Up to this point, we haven't been able to be competitive in recruiting against the better basketball programs.

 

 

Agreed, but most of our recruits come from different countries so the competition for them isn't as great

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They have a new freshman player, Kitija Laska, who played with the team in Spain and went like 9/10 from three pointers or something. Hopefully she and Ferreria will be able to shine this season and lead next season.

Great for this season, but it's next I'm concerned about. You have to have a slasher to get the open 3's. If we don't have another Courtney in the wings, next season will be pretty much back to the middle of the pack IMO.

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Agreed, but most of our recruits come from different countries so the competition for them isn't as great

Correct.

CJF discussed that at the AAC media day yesterday. But, that has been out of necessity.

He had quite a bit to say about recruiting and the NCAA rules.

We are about to sign four US players. There are threads about them on the prospect board:

 

No doubt, our coach would love to be able to land more TOP American players, especially those from Florida. He is trying to do that with the '17 players.

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