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Gulf grad ready to start next chapter at USF

By IZZY GOULD
Published June 13, 2007


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NEW PORT RICHEY - Alton Voss thinks he is good to go.

The NCAA Clearinghouse has yet to declare Voss eligible to play for USF and was looking into a summer course the former Gulf quarterback took last year to replace a grade, he said.

Another concern was his ACT score. Voss said he achieved a qualifying score though he took one final crack at the test Saturday to be safe.

Voss believes it is a matter of when and not if the Clearinghouse will give him its blessing. He expects to hear by June 27, the day he plans to leave for USF.

"I'm fine, " Voss said. "I'm not even worrying at all."

Voss was the most sought after recruit in Pasco County's 2007 signing class. After flirting with Alabama and Florida, Voss signed with USF because it promised him a shot at the quarterback job. Most schools wanted Voss to play defense.

Voss expects to enter fall camp with a chance to prove he could be the Bulls' quarterback of the future. He hopes to redshirt to gain a year of experience while distancing himself from sophomore Matt Grothe, who emerged as a bona fide leader in 2006.

"I think I made a good decision, " Voss said of signing with USF. "I have high expectations going there. I want to get in the mix and show that I can step up and show them they need me."

USF has kept its word thus far about Voss and the quarterback job. Schools such as Florida recruited Voss as an "athlete" because of his physical abilities. Voss was a Times' all-county defensive selection.

"They never talked about switching my position, " Voss said. "Coach Jim Leavitt said I can play anywhere on the field I want. I'm happy playing quarterback and that's what I'm going to do."

Voss is working out with personal trainer Rob Oppedisano three times a week. They spend a lot of time working one-on-one with conditioning drills.

Voss has recovered from rehabbing a knee injury and Oppedisano has been impressed with his work ethic. Oppedisano warns that Voss' hopes of redshirting could die if one of his teammates is injured.

"He's lost a little speed but he'll get that back in no time, " Oppedisano said. "He's going to be looking real good. I know a lot of schools that were looking at him as an athlete. It's going to be hard to keep him off the field if someone gets hurt. He's a tremendous athlete."

For Voss, time is moving quickly.

Once he moves to campus he'll begin classes July 2. And he's still holding on a bit to his days at Gulf. He worked with current Gulf players last week. And he hopes to make the short drive to see a game or two in the fall.

"I want to figure out the time I have off so I can visit some people, " Voss said. "Everything has gone by so fast.

"I'm gonna miss it."

Izzy Gould can be reached at igould@tampabay.com or (727) 580-5315.

[Last modified June 12, 2007, 21:24:00]


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