The University of South Florida’s basketball team first tipped off as the Golden Brahmans on December 1, 1971, with a 74-73 win at Stetson University. Their first home game was marked by a 98-77 loss to Florida at Curtis Hixon Hall in downtown Tampa, which would serve as USF’s primary arena of the seven courts the team would call home ...
In 1991: The men’s soccer team wins its first NCAA Division I tournament game, defeating Duke 2–1.
In 2003: The football team wins its first bowl game, defeating East Carolina 64–17 in the GMAC Bowl.
In 2013: South Florida Bulls all sports teams including football, baseball and basketball sports teams joined the American Athletic Conference (AAC)
In 2018: The women’s basketball team reaches its highest ranking ever, No. 13 in the AP Poll, after starting 12–12.
History of the Bulls
The South Florida Bulls have a long and storied history in the NCAA. Since 1997, the Bulls have been one of college sports’ most successful teams. With five conference championships, seven bowl game appearances, and six National Championship Game appearances under their belt since joining Division I-A football in 2001, it’s no wonder that USF is considered one of the top programs in all college athletics.
Throughout its history as a member of Conference USA (CUSA), Big East Conference (BEC), and American Athletic Conference (AAC), USF has established itself as an elite program with multiple championship titles across several different sports, including baseball, basketball, and soccer. The men's basketball team won CUSA Championships twice during its time there while also making two trips to the NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 before joining AAC for the 2013 season, where they made four consecutive tournament appearances from 2015-2018, reaching Elite 8 once during the 2016 season, which was led by former guard Anthony Collins who was named AAC Player Of The Year for 2017 season.
On top of that success on the hardwood floor, the USF baseball team had a great run from 2002 - 2008 when they reached College World Series three times, winning the Regional title 5 out 6 years between 2003-2008. The soccer program found success, too, winning the BEC Regular Season title in 2007 & 2010, along with BEC Tournament Title in 2009 & 2011, followed by two more regular season titles after moving to AAC in 2014 & 2015, respectively.
As far as Football goes, the Bulls experienced some excellent moments throughout the 2000s decade, such as 3 straight Bowl games wins from 2006 – 2008 but unfortunately couldn't keep up the same level of performance into the next decade, losing the majority of games till 2019, when Jeff Scott took over head coaching duties leading them back to glory days finishing 11–2 overall records eventually earning a spot at New Era Pinstripe Bowl where they beat Pitt Panthers 34–27 ending 10-year streak without any bowl win or appearance. These accomplishments prove why South Florida Bulls should be regarded among the best collegiate athletic programs around the country!
College Sports Established
University of South Florida
1973 - Present / NCAA Division 1
1965 - 1973 / University Division of the NCAA
2013 - Present / American Athletic Conference
2005 - 2013 / Big East Conference
2003 - 2005 / Conference USA
2001 - 2003 / Independent
Bulls - The South Florida Bulls are one of the most recognizable teams in college sports, and their nickname has become an iconic symbol of success. But where did this unique moniker come from? The answer lies in the history of USF’s founding as a university.
When USF was founded in 1956, it was initially known as “University College” because it focused on providing higher education opportunities to working adults who could not attend traditional universities. As such, students at University College needed something that would represent them with pride and strength—something that could be easily identified by those outside the institution too. It wasn't long before they found their perfect mascot: a bull!
The bull became symbolic not only because bulls are strong animals but also because they can represent courage and determination—two traits that perfectly encapsulated what University College stood for at the time (and still does today). This symbolism is further reinforced by other nicknames associated with bulls, such as "the fighting spirit" or "the unstoppable force." In addition, many people believe that having a bull mascot is good luck since these animals have been used throughout history for various purposes, including agriculture and sports competitions like jousting or rodeo events. Thus when University College changed its name to “The University of South Florida” (USF) in 1978, it kept its original Bull mascot intact, making it one of only two NCAA Division I schools whose mascots remained unchanged since inception (the other being Stanford).
Today there's no doubt why so many fans proudly wear black-and-gold apparel during game days: The South Florida Bulls' nickname origins embody everything we love about college athletics - hard work, determination, courage & resilience. Go Bulls!
Men's Basketball 0
Women's Basketball 0
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