David Cloninger

September 5, 2013

Cloninger Soundoff: Shaw a pro at controlling emotions

I’ve always been impressed with Connor Shaw. While a story I did last year looked at his non-serious side (a side he never shows to us schlubs in the media, but does to his teammates), his game demeanor has always been a classic version of what a quarterback should be.

David Cloninger

All things Gamecocks, especially basketball and football

I’ve always been impressed with Connor Shaw. While a story I did last year looked at his non-serious side (a side he never shows to us schlubs in the media, but does to his teammates), his game demeanor has always been a classic version of what a quarterback should be.

He doesn’t goof around in warm-ups. He hardly ever smiles. His eyes resemble two flint marbles while his scalp gleams through a buzz-cut so severe that military men cringe. Boy was born to play football, understand?

It’s why I had to chuckle when Steve Spurrier said earlier this week that he hoped Shaw wouldn’t be so keyed up to be playing in his native Georgia that he’d let it affect his game. Shaw may not be the most talented quarterback I’ve ever seen, but he’s not going to let his emotions dictate his performance.

I know he wants to win this game as badly as he’s wanted to win any other game – he said as much on Wednesday. But he’s not going to be so jacked that his first pass will be rifled into the tuba of the marching band. He’ll direct the game, as he always does, and limit his mistakes – that’s the game plan that USC has to have in order to win.

Shaw embraces the team-first attitude and will to win more than any player in recent memory. He’ll definitely show that on Saturday.

If the Gamecocks lose, it won’t be because of their quarterback’s mentality.

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