Fate has smiled on the USF basketball program and with its entire backcourt almost wiped out by graduation it couldn’t have happened at a better time.
The Bulls recently learned they will represent the United States in the inaugural Pan American University Championships slated for August 8 through 15th in Brazil.
USF will be allowed to dress 12 players for the five games for the five games it will play in Salvador, Brazil. The tournament will be comprised of teams from Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, U.S. Virgin Islands, Netherlands Atillies and Uruguay.
USF will uniforms that say USA in the event, which will play under FIBA rules and will be hosted by the Pan American University Sport Federation. Along with their five games, the Bulls will be allowed to practice for 10 days before the games.
The Bulls have only one experienced guard returning in Anthony Crater and will have four newcomers in junior college transfers Shedrick Haynes (Palmetto), Hugh Robertson, Jawaza Poland and freshman LaVonte Dority. Also returning are two freshmen who saw little playing time last year, Shaun Noriega from North Port High and Mike Burwell.
"It's an honor for our basketball program to represent the United States in this international event," said USF head coach Stan Heath. "This also is a great opportunity for our team to compete against some of the best players in the world and prepare our team for the upcoming season.
"I want to thank Doug Woolard [USF Director of Athletics] and Nels Hawkinson [Executive Director of BTI Events] for working diligently to make this happen for USF basketball.”