TAMPA – The University of South Florida football match-up with Rutgers that will serve as the Bulls Big East Conference opener has been moved to Thursday, Sept. 13 at 7:30 p.m. to accommodate ESPN, the league announced Friday. The game had originally been scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 15.
The Bulls and Scarlet Knights will be meeting for the seventh time. Rutgers holds a 4-2 advantage. The clubs have split the last two meetings, with each team winning at home. USF won the last game at Raymond James Stadium in 2010, 28-27, but was unable to hold onto a lead at Rutgers last season, eventually falling in overtime, 20-17.
The game will be televised by ESPN, but that's not necessarily a good thing because of the Bulls football program that has suffered a bad case of Thursday night blues.
Nothing hurt worse than in 2007 when USF was ranked second nationally and lost at Rutgers in a Thursday night game and then two years later suffered a humiliating defeat to the Knights getting shutout 31-0 for the program's first regular season shutout.
This game will also be difficult because the Saturday before the Bulls be on the road at Nevada and have such a short time to prepare. The kickoff for that game has not yet been determined. The Bulls are hoping for an early one so they can get home at a reasonable time.