South Carolina is getting a little thin along the offensive line.
Backup center Ryan Broadhead is likely out for the season after tearing a knee ligament during Monday’s practice, South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier said Tuesday.
Freshman tackle Cody Gibson also will miss a few weeks after spraining his knee Monday.
Broadhead, a redshirt junior from Leesburg, Ga., was vying for the first game action of his career.
"He’s probably finished, unfortunately,” Spurrier said. “He was doing a pretty good job.”
Spurrier said freshman Ronald Patrick will work at second-team center behind T.J. Johnson; walk-on long snapper Chris Vaughn has been promoted to third team.
USC already had lost offensive tackle Quintin Richardson for the year following shoulder surgery. Nick Allison, expected to be a backup guard, left the team last month.
Sophomore running back Jarvis Giles, who’s battling for playing time in a crowded backfield, made his presence felt in Tuesday’s scrimmage featuring mostly young players. Giles, a sophomore, rushed eight times for 86 yards, including a 34-yard touchdown run.
Spurrier especially liked how Giles stayed on his feet.
“Jarvis only fell down once, I told him. But he made some very good runs,” Spurrier said. “Of course, one of our freshmen did a very poor tackling job on him, but Jarvis shook him and went about 30, 40 yards for one score.”
Two of the team’s smallest players -- Ace Sanders, the 5-foot-7, 166-pound freshman receiver, and Bryce Sherman, the 5-4, 155-pound sophomore running back – had trouble hanging onto the football in the scrimmage, a surefire way to get in the head coach’s doghouse.
“Little Ace, he jukes and jives, and then he fumbles a few times. So we’ve got to get him to quit fumbling a bit,” Spurrier said.
“Bryce Sherman had some nice runs, but he spit one out after about a 15-20 yard run. So our little guys, they’re hard to tackle, but if they can’t hold onto the ball, it’s hard to keep putting them in there.”
Besides the offensive linemen, tailback Brian Maddox joined the injured list after pulling his groin Monday. Starting tailback Kenny Miles already is out with a hamstring injury.
Starting receiver Alshon Jeffery, who had wisdom teeth removed last week, should be cleared for full contact later this week. “They don’t want him to get on the jaw, I guess,” Spurrier said. “So that’s his only problem. He’s OK.”
Freshman quarterback Connor Shaw completed 4-of-6 passes. But he didn’t see an open receiver on a post route that might have gone for a score, and he threw an interception over the middle on another play.
Freshman tailback Marcus Lattimore had seven carries for 41 yards, and said he would have had more yardage if he’d kept his shoulder pads lower.
Senior cornerback Chris Culliver liked what he saw of the effort on defense, even if the execution wasn’t always there. He noted the coaches can live with occasional misplays as long as the hustle is always there.
“That was something I was proud about, not being lazy and not running to the ball. Everybody was running to the ball,” Culliver said. “Everything looked pretty good. We’ve just got to tighten up. Everybody needs to know their assignments.”
Quote of the day
“This is how it’s going to be for the Georgia game. We’ve got to get used to it a little bit more and get ready for those heat games (against) Southern Miss and Georgia,” – Lattimore on the hot scrimmage conditions.
The Gamecocks return to the practice fields at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. The session is closed to the public.