Steve Spurrier had a simple plan for No. 12 South Carolina’s (2-1, 0-1) bye week – improve the Gamecocks’ performance across the board. The head ball coach apparently has had issues with nearly every aspect of the team’s play in its first three games and said the players worked hard last week to correct mistakes.
Spurrier has been especially bothered by the Gamecocks play on special teams, a strength last year. This season, however, the Gamecocks are near the bottom in most league special teams’ categories.
Spurrier even took issue with the offense, which totaled more than 1,000 yards the last two games (454 yards vs. Georgia and 579 against Vanderbilt). Quarterback Connor Shaw is fourth in the SEC in total offense and hasn’t thrown an interception.
Still, Spurrier is honing in on all aspects of Carolina’s play to ensure the team is ready for a big non-conference road game this week.
The Gamecocks return to action at undefeated Central Florida (3-0) on Saturday. UCF, also off on a bye week, defeated Penn State 34-31 in its last game and moved to 3-0 for the first time since 1988. More than a few folks are eyeing this game as a potential upset. No one is taking the threat more seriously than Spurrier.
“A lot of them down there say this might be the biggest game they’ve ever had in the history of the school,” Spurrier said of UCF. “Got an opportunity if they win to obviously jump into the Top 25 and have a chance to maybe beat everyone on their schedule. They’re a good team. So it’s a huge game for all of us.”
What to look for in Week 5: A motivated Gamecocks team to flex its muscles and take care of business. There’s no question South Carolina is more talented than UCF, and Spurrier should have them very focused on the task at hand after two weeks of preparation. I like the Gamecocks big in this one.