Jake Bentley’s efficiency
South Carolina’s quarterback had an up-and-down start, but he connected on 16 consecutive passes at one point and finished 24-for-36 for 304 yards.
True freshman wide receivers Chad Terrell and OrTre Smith caught their first college passes, Smith’s for a touchdown. Shi Smith also had a 25-yard reception and Randrecous Davis caught his first pass of the year.
USC started well, getting a Skai Moore interception on Kentucky’s first possession and a fumble recovery on the second. The Gamecocks didn’t score on any of three turnovers.
South Carolina punter Joseph Charlton didn’t punt often, but he averaged 40.7 yards a kick with one inside the 20 and one longer than 50 yards.
The Gamecocks had as many scoring chances as a team could want. Drives off turnovers, chances in opposing territory, and for the most part, they couldn’t cash in.
The running game
The Gamecocks averaged an anemic 2.7 yards a carry. They couldn’t get Ty’Son Williams involved after a strong game in Missouri, and failed to convert three vital chances with a yard to go.
The kicking game
It was about as nightmarish a night as a team could draw up. Things started with a missed extra point, and USC missed all its field goal attempts, including one after a delay of game took points off the board.
Getting off the field
South Carolina’s defense is built on making opponents work and stopping them in third-and-long situations. Kentucky was 4-for-6 on third-and-7 or longer.