Week 2 Preview: The Bulls Head West
The voice of USF Athletics routinely puts down his radio headset and picks up the pen to share his perspective on the history of USF Athletics.
Louk has been broadcasting games for 29 years and is the resident historian in the Athletics Department hallways.
Voice of the USF Bulls
Here we are in week two of the football season, which more often than not follows week one. No surprises there.
The Bulls have one win behind them after dispatching Chattanooga, 34-13. Not a whole lot of surprises there either; Chattanooga played hard as expected, but was eventually outmanned as expected. Now it's time to get the seats locked in an upright position for a long and interesting trip ahead.
The Bulls will travel to Reno, Nev., for a first-ever game against the Nevada Wolf Pack. (Please note that Wolf Pack is two words... and Chattanooga still wants to be called Chattanooga).
The Bulls haven't strayed this far west very often. They opened the 1999 season at San Diego State in a game notable for two reasons; the debut of quarterback Marquel Blackwell and the first-ever USF 1-A opponent. Two years later, the Bulls traveled to Salt Lake City to play Utah.
There's a couple of interesting things about the logistics of this trip. This will be quite a hike; over 5 hours in the air to get there. It will mark only the Bulls second game in the Pacific Time Zone, and it will mark their westernmost game. (Yes, Reno is actually west of San Diego. If that was on the SAT when I took it back in 1918, I probably got it wrong).
It will also be only the second time that altitude may be an issue. The players definitely felt it at Utah back in 2001, and even though Reno is only about 4,500 feet above sea level, that's probably about 4,499 ¾ feet higher than Vero Beach.
Nevada is a more than capable opponent. The Wolf Pack too are 1-0, coming off an impressive road win over Cal. And it's not just about this year; they've been to a bowl game seven years in a row.
You'll see plenty of the pistol formation; Nevada pretty much originated the offense that features the quarterback away from the center, but with a running back behind him.
Not only will this be the first time the Bulls have played Nevada, it will be the first time Nevada has played any team from the Big East. With 227 wins, Nevada coach Chris Ault is the only active FBS coach who is enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame. Frank Beamer of Virginia Tech and Mack Brown of Texas are the only active FBS coaches with more victories.
You may not know the Wolf Pack (still two words!) very well, but they have a lot of tradition and they have won a lot of football games. This one will be a challenge for the Bulls. It will be fun to see how the Bulls defense (only 151 yards allowed against Chattanooga) matches up against the unique Nevada offense (451 yards gained against Cal.)
Our coverage begins at 1:30 p.m. on The Fan 98.7 in Tampa, the USF-IMG Network around the state of Florida, and Sirius 136. TV is the CBS Sports Network at 3:30 p.m..
Join us Saturday, and then get ready for a short week after that, with Rutgers coming in Thursday night.
The voice of the Bulls, Jim Louk, offers his perspective of USF Athletics, both past and present.
For 29 years, Jim Louk has been the voice of USF Athletics.
Louk came to USF in 1983 as the radio play-by-play announcer for the USF men's basketball team and served as the lead voice until the conclusion of the 1996-97 season. He then made the transition to football in USF's inaugural 1997 campaign, and still serves as the team's play-by-play announcer today. Louk will come into the 2012 football season having broadcast every Bulls football game in history - a span of 177 games.
He has handled USF TV play by play broadcasts on SportsChannel, Fox Sports Florida, and Brighthouse Sports Network. His career includes over 1,500 play by play broadcasts of USF events, including football, men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, men's and women's soccer and volleyball.
This series of articles for GoUSFBulls.com began in 2010.
A native of Rochester, N.Y., Louk is a 1979 graduate of the University of Bridgeport where he earned a bachelor's degree in journalism. Louk and his wife Barbara reside in Lutz. Their son Ross is a sophomore in college.