South Carolina continues to look for more of a physical presence on the offensive line, and that means Byron Jerideau will have a very busy two weeks.
The No. 14 Gamecocks don’t play again until Oct. 29, and by that time the junior who was just moved from the defensive line may have a much bigger role on the offensive line. Jerideau played on both lines Saturday in a 14-12 win over Mississippi State.
“He’ll have a chance with the open date to see if he can come in there and play a whole lot,” coach Steve Spurrier said. “We need some strength and some surge in there, and hopefully he can give us that.”
South Carolina averaged only 2.6 yards per carry against the Bulldogs.
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Mississippi State “was pretty physical, but we had some blocking assignment errors,” Spurrier said.
Fullback Matt Coffee, a sophomore who backs up Dalton Wilson at fullback, was lost for the season due to a right knee injury he suffered against Mississippi State, Spurrier said. He did not have a carry or catch this season.
Coffee is the third running back to suffer a season-ending knee injury, joining Marcus Lattimore and Shon Carson.
“I can’t remember having more than one in a season, but we’ve had three at that position now,” Spurrier said.
BY THE NUMBERS
The Gamecocks are now fourth in the SEC in scoring offense (32.4), scoring defense (19.1), total offense (398.3) and total defense (277.6). They are second in rushing offense (197.9), sixth in rushing defense (143.9), fifth in passing offense (200.4) and first in passing defense (133.7).
Freshman defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is tied for second in the country with four forced fumbles. He forced one in the first half against Mississippi State, but the Gamecocks did not recover it.
South Carolina remains tied with Rutgers for the national lead in turnovers gained with 24. Both teams gained two turnovers Saturday.
Defensive end Melvin Ingram was passed for the SEC lead in sacks by Auburn’s Corey Lemonier, who has six this season. Ingram had 1.5 tackles for loss Saturday but no sacks.