Leavitt keeps faith in kicker

Published October 3, 2006

TAMPA - Despite another missed field goal in another close loss, USF coach Jim Leavitt said he'll stick with sophomore Mike Benzer - for now.

"We're going to go with Benzer this week. This week," said Leavitt, who saw Benzer miss a 40-yard attempt in Friday's 22-20 loss to Rutgers, leaving him 1-for-7 in his two years at USF.

INJURY UPDATE: Linebacker Stephen Nicholas won't be sidelined by the shoulder injury that briefly took him out of Friday's game. Leavitt said center Nick Capogna, who missed much of Friday's game after wearing a cast on his left forearm last week, would be ready this week.

CLEBERT DONE: Defensive tackle Richard Clebert, one of the Bulls' most experienced defensive linemen, will miss the rest of the season with a torn groin muscle, Leavitt said. Clebert should be eligible for a medical redshirt.

- GREG AUMAN, Times staff writer

FSU: McClure eager

TALLAHASSEE - Darius McClure played with a broken toe much of last season. He missed time this preseason with a stress fracture in his right tibia. So the last thing that will stop the reserve safety is a little knee problem.

McClure, now the second-team rover and free safety, has no thoughts about missing Thursday's game against N.C. State after hurting his knee Sept. 23 against Rice.

"I'm pretty much the wild card in the secondary," joked McClure, who sat out most drills during last week's bye.

BACK IN THE MIX: After losing his starting job, cornerback J.R. Bryant has "responded and had much improved practices the last week and half," defensive coordinator Mickey Andrews said. With Michael Ray Garvin and Jamie Robinson nursing minor injuries, Bryant could be back in the picture to start.

- D.C. REEVES, Times correspondent, and BRIAN LANDMAN, Times staff writer

UF: Harvin nearly ready

GAINESVILLE - After not being full speed since UF's game at Tennessee, freshman receiver Percy Harvin appears ready for LSU. Hampered by a high left ankle sprain, Harvin practiced Monday with a light brace.

NELSON HONORED: Safety Reggie Nelson was named the SEC defensive player of the week. He returned an interception 70 yards for a TD against Alabama.

- IAN FISHER, Times correspondent

UM: James honored

CORAL GABLES - Running back Javarris James was named ACC rookie of the week after rushing 18 times for 148 yards.