Starting in the Fall of 2019, our student-athlete Margriet Timmermans is one of the international tennis players at University of South Florida. Margriet played her first matches this year, but due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus, the rest of the season has been canceled. It is unfortunate for both the university and Margriet that she was unable to play more matches to show her potential and talent. Yet she has already achieved some special achievements in her junior career. For example, she won the Nike Junior Tour under 12, is a 4-time Dutch champion and achieved her first WTA/ITF point before leaving for college tennis.

“What I like most about USF is the fact that there are a lot of students on the campus which brings a nice atmosphere, the friendships with all the other student-athletes and the beautiful weather.”  

Margriet Timmermans

For a student athlete it is essential to have a good feeling about your chosen university. In addition to the athletic and academic aspects, there are other factors that come into play when choosing a university. For example: the coaching staff, the campus, university traditions, and factors such as housing and student organizations. Sometimes it could be nice to read a little more about the mascot. We wanted you guys to learn a bit more about University of South Florida, and thought it was time for a new University Spotlight. Check it out!


Quick Facts

USF is a member of the NCAA and competes at the highest level: NCAA Division 1. All teams play in the American Athletic Conference. The USF team is known as the USF Bulls. The mascot is Rocky the Bull. The USF colors are green and gold. How do you like their basketball stadium?

Rocky the Bull

Rocky the Bull first appeared in 1965. First, Rocky the Bull was just a cartoon character in the school’s Newspaper. in 1986, USF updated Rocky and gave him a new look. Today’s Rocky exists since 2003. A remarkable fact is that Rocky won the ‘capital One Mascot of the Year Award’ in 2013. He won the competition with a perfect score. Something that never happened before. Read the full story behind Rocky the Bull here.

Herd Perks Student Rewards App

For student-athletes it is extra motivating to perform for many (own) fans. Fans are always there to support you during matches. This application shows that USF finds both fans and athletes important. Fans are rewarded for attending games or events. Logging into an event with this application allows fans to score points. It is possible to win prizes with these points. These prizes include a Ford, scholarship, or a holiday trip. Read more about the application, the purpose, and the rewards here.

Varsity sports at USF

Men’s sports: baseball, basketball, football, golf, soccer, tennis, track & field and cross country.

Women’s sports: basketball, golf, sailing, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field, cross country, and volleyball.

Do you want to know more about the different sports programs of USF? Click here.


According to the U.S. News College Rankings, USF ranks among the top 50 public universities in the US. The university has also been ranked 11th as the university with the best opportunities for economically disadvantaged students. On average, the student-faculty ratio is 22: 1, and almost 45% of all lectures consist of less than 20 students. The five most popular studies are:

  • Health Professions
  • Business, Management, Marketing
  • Biological and Biomedical sciences
  • Social Sciences
  • Engineering

Curious about all the studies that USF offers at bachelor’s and master’s level? View the academic website here and click here to see if your desired field of study (major) is offered.

The campus

Campuses in America are (often) gigantic and have special facilities. This also applies to the USF campus. USF not only offers housing, but also a wide range of sports centers. In addition, USF has 3 campuses. In this article we explain the campus of USF – Tampa, where Margriet studies. Check the virtual campus tour here or watch the campus tour video below.

Sports and recreation

In 2009, plans for a new sports section of the university were approved. The project cost $33.5 million and offered a new baseball, softball, and soccer stadium. Football and basketball got new training facilities, and we must say: they’re pretty nice :). The new Corbett Soccer Stadium  looks fantastic and has a capacity of more than 3,000 students. In addition, there is the Raymond James Stadium that can accommodate more than 32,000 fans. Margriet herself is active on the Varsity Tennis Courts. There are 12 tennis courts in this mini park. The ftennis courts have recently been resurfaced and offer a great viewing experience for the fans. Check out the video below for an impression!

Outdoor places

In addition to sports and studying, it is also important for student athletes to be able to enjoy the environment. USF has some very nice places to relax. For example, there is West Pond Pavilion. This peaceful, shaded spot is next to the water. There is also Castor Beach at Castor Pond. Here, students can get some fresh air next to the water. Unfortunately, the Castor beach of the university is not located at the ocean but on a small pond. Do you want to go to a place where you can dream away? Then “Unspecific Gravity installation” is recommended. And so, there are many more beautiful places on the campus.

Campus Recreation Center

The recently renovated Campus Recreation Center is located on the Tampa campus. The Recreation Center offers a few cool facilities:

  • Two sports halls for badminton, basketball, and volleyball
  • An indoor running track
  • 5 racquetball/handball fields
  • Squash field
  • Indoor pool
  • Multiple fitness room

Student organizations

With more than 600 organizations, it will be easy to find your passion at USF. The university offers organizations for every religion, language or even organizations that are created from courses offered by the university. Are you unsure whether you fit in with the student organization? You could attend an event without being bound to it. Curious about which other student organizations USF offers? Check them here.

Other statistics

  • USF has a bachelor student population of 32,238 and a total student population of 43,838
  • 18% of the students live on campus
  • USF has earned 120 conference titles since the start of their sports program (1965)
  • Neven Subotic studied at USF, currently a professional soccer player at Union Berlin
  • Paige Railey studied at USF, participated in America’s Olympic sailing team
  • Jane Geddes studied at USF, two-time championship winner and eleven-time LPGA Tour winner


“Go Bulls!” Hand Sign

The hand sign started out as a ‘good luck’ symbol for free-throw shots with basketball. Meanwhile, the “go bulls” hand sign is used for cheering, greeting, or representing USF.

Scoring celebration

When the USF football team scores, the cheerleaders and dancers are ready for their ‘scoring celebration’. On top of a pyramid of cheerleaders, a cheerleader does a push-up. The dance team does a ‘kick’ with every achieved point.

Bull Market

A market has been held in the USF market hall for decades. Every Wednesday, the market is filled with students, employees and teachers looking for food, drinks, friends, and colleagues to enjoy themselves.

Fight Song:

USF Bulls are we,
We hold our standard upright and free.
For Green and Gold we stand united.
Our beacon lighted and noble to see.
USF Bulls are we,
For USF we’ll always be.
With all our might we fight the battle
here and now, and we will win the
(shout!) S-O-U-T-H F-L-O-R-I-D-A

Getting excited? Do you want to become a student athlete at USF, or would you like to learn more? Future champions start HERE!