South Carolina’s offensive and defensive players get along fine off the field, but there’s a connection missing during games, sophomore safety Chris Moody said.
“As far as the game goes, we don’t have the best chemistry,” Moody said Tuesday. “I don’t think we pull for each other the best at times. We don’t root for each other too much. That’s going to change this week.”
The Gamecocks are fifth in the SEC in scoring with 35.9 points per game but last in the conference in points allowed at 34.1 points per game.
“We know our defense is young, they still have a lot to work on,” junior running back Brandon Wilds said. “As far as the team camaraderie, it’s pretty good.”
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Wilds, who has 445 yards on 71 carries this season, declined to discuss whether he will enter the NFL Draft at the end of the season. Spurrier said last week that Wilds plans to participate in Senior Day activities in two weeks and then decide whether to return for his senior season or take an early shot at professional football.
“Nothing is decided until after the season,” Wilds said.
Florida freshman Treon Harris will be making his third career start against the Gamecocks. The Gators started the season 3-3 but have won both games Harris has started to improve to 5-3.
“Seems like we go through the year and the other team seems to find their quarterback,” Spurrier said.
Tennessee’s Josh Dobbs made his first start of the season and Texas A&M’s Kenny Hill made the first start of his career Kenny Hill against South Carolina this season and both quarterbacks excelled in victories.
“And I read in the paper where the Clemson quarterback, (Deshaun) Watson, he’s going to be ready (against South Carolina) now, too. So we’re getting these teams with sometimes a new quarterback, but it seems like their best quarterback when they face us.”
Spurrier again offered a word of support for his defensive coaching staff Tuesday.
“I’ve tried to sort of look in on the defense a little bit here there and the other, but you know I’ve been an offensive coach my whole career and that’s what I’m most comfortable doing,” Spurrier said. “And obviously, our defensive coaches, they were here all last year, they’ve been here through the 11-2 seasons and whether or not we should’ve done this, that and the other, obviously, we wish we had but we’re struggling so much with the pass rush.”
Senior quarterback Dylan Thompson has been named one of 12 national finalists for the 2014 Wuerffel Trophy, which honors the college football player who “best exhibits exemplary community service.”