TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The football team at the University of South Florida will start the 2021 season on the road against North Carolina State University in exactly one week.

After finishing the 2020 season with one win and eight losses, you can bet the Bulls are anxious to return to the field to prove themselves.

Their head coach, Jeff Scott, who is entering his second season with the program, shared this message to his players ahead of that first game.

“You just focus on yourself and keep that internal focus so that is what I have told our players,” said Scott. “‘Hey, this is the biggest game of the year because it is our next game.’ After that, the next game is going to be the biggest game of the year.”

Although it may seem like an obvious approach, Scott explained he has seen it transform into a winning culture at his former school, Clemson University.

“Ultimately, you get your team to prepare to the standard and really be so consumed by doing their job that they do not get caught up in the exterior,” said Scott. “My goal and expectation for our guys is to see us prepare to play our very best game and, then, we will find out how that matches up against a very talented team.”

Scott added he has plenty of experience playing against NC State because Clemson usually faces them every year.

“I think they have 19 of their 22 starters coming back and the quarterback who was their starter at the beginning of the year last year who missed the rest of the year is back,” he said. “There is a lot of confidence over there. I think they are probably one of the top three teams in the ACC this year so physical, a lot of experience, talented.”

That game will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 2.