Ask former USC fullback Warren Muir the secret of the Gamecocks' success in 1969, and you get the smart back's typical answer: his offensive line.
"I didn't have the greatest speed or size," Muir said, "but we had a good line, and I had the opportunity to have some openings. It all starts with the offensive line, and we had the horses."
One of the best, tackle Dave DeCamilla, said it was more about smarts than size for USC's line during that ACC championship season.
"To be frank, we didn't have a lot (of size)," the upstate New York native said. "We were just a bunch of regular guys, no supermen. But we executed.
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"I see replays now, and we had a hat on everyone: good execution, well-crafted plays, getting everyone blocked. And inside the 10, other than the 1968 Clemson game, we never had trouble punching it in. If we got down there with Warren, we got it in."
That was never truer than during the 1969 game against the Tigers. A week earlier, the Gamecocks had clinched the ACC title with a 24-6 romp at Wake Forest, and a Peach Bowl bid was in hand. Quarterback Tommy Suggs said he worried about his team's intensity; he need not have.
In USC's most impressive offensive showing, the Gamecocks rolled to 517 yards of offense - 230 passing and 287 rushing, on 72 carries - in a 27-13 home win.
Ask DeCamilla his most vivid memory from that seventh win of 1969, and he laughs.
"Doug Hamrick was our tight end, best hands ever, but also a (heckuva) blocker," he said. "We're double-teaming this one guy - Ralph Daniel - and we're taking him back, (creating) gaping holes.
"Doug was chiding me because I was chuckling. I sort of felt bad for the kid because we knocked him so far back, and the coaches kept running that hole. There was a lot of daylight between the tackles."
DeCamilla later coached in the Midwest before becoming a marketing director in California in 1979. Today, he works in investment management and, with his brother, owns a 70-acre olive farm that produces California olive oil.
He's still proud of his unit from 1969. "I had, I think, one offside in my career," he said. "I still remember it: a punt against Virginia Tech.
"We didn't screw up too badly. If we did, we didn't play."
- Bob Gillespie