Steve Spurrier looked tanned and rested Friday during his appearance on Jim Rome’s “Rome is Burning” show on ESPN.
Spurrier taped the segment from Orlando, where he is attending an ESPN powwow at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex.
There was some good TV karma working: Spurrier’s appearance came during the second intermission of Team USA’s fin-kicking of Finland in the men’s hockey semifinals.
Rome brought up the subject of USC’s Papajohns.com Bowl loss to UConn, which Spurrier last month called one of three most embarrassing defeats of his career.
“I think UConn just smacked us in the ground, pretty much,” Spurrier said. “I give coach Randy Edsall and his guys all the credit for being better emotionally ready to play. … They just acted like they wanted to play more than we did.”
Mentioning USC’s so-so history, Spurrier told Rome that he would have tied Lou Holtz as the Gamecocks’ winningest bowl coach (with two Ws) had the Gamecocks beaten UConn.
As for making history at USC, Spurrier said he still believes he can win the school’s first SEC title.
“South Carolina’s a school that’s got a lot of potential. I really believe we do have a chance there,” he said. “I know it’s a tough league. But we’re hoping we can put together that one special year and hopefully win a conference championship there at South Carolina.”
Rome asked about the “meat grinder” that can take a toll on coaches, referencing Urban Meyer, and the 64-year-old Spurrier said he thinks he’s stayed healthy by maintaining outside interests (i.e., golf, which he said he plays four to five months a year).
Spurrier, who joked that it’s been a while since he’s been known as a quarterbacks guru, said this about Tim Tebow:
“Once he tightens up that throwing motion, which it appears he has quite a bit, then it has to become a habit. I think he might be a first-round pick. If he tightens up that throwing motion a little bit, we know he’s got all the other intangibles that great quarterbacks have.”
Spurrier being Spurrier, he couldn’t resist taking a little dig at Rome.
As the segment was wrapping, Spurrier smiled and said: “I know sometimes you give me a little crap, but sometimes we all deserve a little bit.”