The Washington Times - December 15, 2008, 09:47AM

Well, let the jokes commence on this one.

Gus Gilchrist played his first game for South Florida yesterday. The Bulls, a regular at the bottom of the Big East over the last few seasons, lost to Niagara 70-55 before 2,577.

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If I just had the phrase “lost to Niagara 70-55 before 2,577” and left out the stuff about South Florida, you’d probably think there was a chance Gilchrist was playing up at Loyola for a competitive MAAC team like nearly every other transfer out of Maryland in the last five years.

Gilchrist had eight points, six rebounds and five turnovers in 26 minutes for the Bulls (3-4).

His path – from signing with the Virginia Tech to asking for a release to signing with Maryland to spending a semester in College Park to securing a release in June  to surfacing at South Florida just as his adviser was given a job as a video assistant – is well-known and not worth any more than a paragraph’s rehashing.

But now Gilchrist’s playing, and the most curious thing to see will be whether the hubbub over the last 20 months or so was worth it. Here’s guessing a lot of people are interested to find out from afar.

Patrick Stevens