Gus Malzahn has doubtless seen how South Carolina’s front seven can’t stop the run, and his running attack averages over 260 yards per game. It seems likely the noted offensive genius will try to exploit that. The Gamecocks’ D-linemen and linebackers have to make stops.
2. HELP EACH OTHER OUT
USC had two 100-yard backs last week and another that scampered for 85. The Gamecocks have to commit to the run to help out their defense and take the pressure off Dylan Thompson to make all the plays in a hostile stadium. The way to do that is ride Mike Davis and Company.
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3. BE GOOD
USC’s last two games have had players suspended due to violating team rules. Nothing serious, but it is curious to see it happen as a hopeful season has slid into the depths. The Gamecocks are hoping the travel roster Saturday matches the one they had after Thursday’s practice.
4. NEXT MAN UP
Rory Anderson suffered a brutal injury, tearing his other tricep against Furman after he’d torn one in spring practice. It removed Thompson’s safest bet underneath on pass routes, but it also gave Jerell Adams a chance to step up. An NFL-ready prospect, Adams could be eyeing a big finish to his season.
For USC to win, it hopes Thompson doesn’t get hurt, or doesn’t make too many mistakes. It hopes the coaches stick with what works, on either side of the ball. It hopes its defense can make a couple of stops, and get a turnover or two. Just keep it close for 55 minutes, and then in the final five, turn to USC’s greatest advantage – kicker Elliott Fry.