By TOM ZEBOLD
USF Senior Writer
TAMPA - The Bulls will go to battle against the Hurricanes decked out in gear that honors men and women who fight on a much more important front.
Traditional green and gold will be infused with a stars and stripes pattern on USF's helmets and uniforms Saturday when the Bulls take part in the Wounded Warrior Project, a non-profit organization that recognizes and contributes to members of the U.S. Armed Forces who have been injured serving their country.
"There are so many great causes out there, but I don't think there are any stronger than having an opportunity to support the men and women who make the sacrifices they do on a daily basis for us to live in the free society that we do," USF head coach Skip Holtz said.
Holtz stood next to a fully uniformed mannequin during his weekly press conference Tuesday that served as a preview of what fans will be seeing at Raymond James Stadium. The Bulls will wear custom made Under Armour uniforms, cleats and gloves that bear the Wounded Warrior logo. The stars and stripes pattern serves as a background for the Bulls' green U logo on the Aqua Tech helmets provided by Schutt.
"It's an honor for us to have the opportunity to wear these uniforms and to honor the men and women in the military," Holtz said.
Holtz made a point of showcasing USF's fancy, new threads and gear early in the week, so his players can get a good look at what they'll be suiting up in when they chase a second straight victory over Miami.
"We don't want to be a bunch of giddy schoolgirls in the locker room before the game talking about how fresh this uniform looks," Holtz said with a smile. "We're really appreciative to Under Armour and to Schutt for what they're making."
Game-worn jerseys will be auctioned off next week on the USF website with all of the proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Project.
Fans can pick up specially designed Under Armour Wounded Warrior products featuring the USF logo at the campus bookstore. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project on behalf of Under Armour and USF.
"It's all for a great cause with what we're doing right now," Holtz said.
A WIN SATURDAY WOULD MEAN...
Holtz said another win over in-state rival Miami would continue to boost USF's image.
"It's a great opportunity for us to make a splash from a national standpoint with a program like this that has won national championships and competed at that level," he said.
What would make it extra sweet is the chance for the Bulls to do it at home, where they haven't played since Oct. 22 against Cincinnati. USF completed its final road trip of the regular season Friday with a 37-17 victory at Syracuse.
"When you get back at 5 o'clock in the morning and you say that was our last road trip, you feel pretty good about knowing your last three are going to at home back at Raymond James Stadium and have an opportunity to play in front of our home crowd, family and friends," Holtz said.
SCOTT GOOD TO GO
Running back Darrell Scott was medically cleared to play Friday against Syracuse, but never saw the field after not practicing most of the week.
"We could have used Darrell Scott if we needed to in an emergency situation, but I thought Demetris Murray and Marcus Shaw did such a good job of carrying the burden," Holtz said.
Murray rushed for 86 yards on 17 carries and scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to help USF put the game away. Shaw had two rushes for 13 yards and scored the Bulls' first touchdown of the game in the second quarter.
Holtz said Scott is good to go for Miami after resting him against Syracuse for precautionary reasons.
"We chose to sit him on the sideline and make sure that he was 100 percent for this game," Holtz said.
Saturday's 3:30 p.m. game will be televised on ESPNU. It marks the fourth contest between USF and Miami, with the Hurricanes holding a 2-1 lead in the series.