Historic Weekend of Recruiting for Charlie Strong, USF

By Chris Torello, Spectrum Sports USF reporter
Last Updated: Sunday, July 30, 2017, 10:05 PM EDT

Charlie Strong has been hard at work on the recruiting trail trying to land commitments for his 2018 class.

In the blink of an eye, USF just landed 12 recruits.

The first domino fell just before the start of the “official” weekend.


Sickles (Tampa) High DB Jontrey Hunter announced his commitment to the Bulls. It was an expected, yet joyous announcement for Bulls Nation.  Hunter had informed Spectrum Sports earlier this summer that he wanted to stay closer to home to be with his family.

“My mom has been pushing me to stay,” said Hunter at the Big County Prep Xecutives Showcase in June.

Hunter’s commitment came after some rumblings had begun about the Bulls not having a local recruit pledging to USF. But Hunter’s commitment was just the beginning for what could be considered a long weekend of elation for the Bulls.


On Friday, USF landed a commitment from a talented three-star defensive tackle, Devin Leacock, out of Port Charlotte High School (Port Charlotte).

Leacock is built like a bull (no pun intended). He is the reigning FHSAA state champion for the 2A weightlifting heavyweight division. Leacock won the title by lifting a combined 800 pounds in two lifts (435 lbs. on bench; 365 lbs. in clean-and-jerk).


This might have been the day when Bulls fans thought, “No…you’re kidding me!” because the Bulls landed five recruits:


-       Talik Keaton, WR, Booker (Sarasota)

-       Randal Copeland, ILB, East Gadsden (Havana)

-       Shaun Peterson Jr., OLB, Nova (Fort Lauderdale)

-       Devon Matthews, S, Jean Ribault (Jacksonville)

-       Keyon Helton, S, West Florida Tech (Pensacola)


Helton, a very underrated safety, shared his joy in joining the Bulls:

“Coach Strong is a great guy and him and his staff are getting ready to do big things and thats something I want to be apart of and play my part in,” said the new Bull. “(Defense Backs Coach) Blue Adams does some great things in the secondary and I'm looking forward to learning great things from him!”


If you left Twitter for five minutes at any point on Sunday, then you probably missed another Bulls commitment.  And USF added some much needed help in the trenches:

-       Adonis Boone, OT, Mainland (Daytona Beach)

-       Ethan Watson, OT, Pensacola Catholic (Pensacola)

-       Jordan Domineck, WDE, George Jenkins (Lakeland)

-       Vincent Davis, Safety, Robert E. Lee (Jacksonville)

-       Eugene Bowman IV, CB, Robert E. Lee (Jacksonville)


The Bulls currently have 25 verbal commitments for their 2018 recruiting class. This class now ranks 52nd in the nation and 4th in the AAC, according to 247 Sports.