South Carolina and Missouri will face off Saturday in Columbia, Mo.
▪ WHO: South Carolina (2-2, 0-2 SEC) at Missouri (3-1, 0-1)
▪ WHERE: Memorial Stadium (72,000), Columbia, Mo
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▪ WHEN: Noon Saturday (Eastern time); 11 a.m. kickoff locally
▪ TV: SEC Network (Tom Hart, play by play; Andre Ward, analysis; Laura Rutledge, sideline)
▪ RADIO: WNKT-FM 107.5 (Todd Ellis, Tommy Suggs, Langston Moore)
▪ SATELLITE RADIO: Sirius 83/XM 190
▪ LINE: Missouri by 1.5
▪ SERIES RECORD: Missouri leads 3-2. The last two games were a two-overtime win by USC in 2013 and a one-point win by Missouri in 2014.
▪ WEATHER REPORT: Morning lows in the mid-40s, then mostly sunny with a daytime high near 64. Northeast wind 10 to 14 mph.
▪ JERSEY REPORT: USC will wear white jerseys and garnet pants on Saturday.
FIVE GAME STORYLINES
1. ZO SHOW
Lorenzo Nunez played very well in his first career start, and now he has to repeat it on the road. It certainly won’t be easy – he faces the same problems as last week (no Brandon Wilds), which limits the running game, and a much better defense than UCF.
2. TWO HALVES
The Gamecocks have had three second-half shutouts in four games. Had it not been for the horrendous first half against Kentucky, they’d be halfway to bowl eligibility. Yards can be lived with – even the you-know-they’re-coming slant routes – as long as the opponent doesn’t cross the goal line.
3. GO T.J.
T.J. Holloman responded with a masterful game in his first start at middle linebacker and will be playing a struggling offense that got an awful lot less experienced when Maty Mauk was suspended. Perhaps a position designed to get interceptions can force a freshman QB to throw some.
4. THE ROCK M
If they can, the Gamecocks need to work the coin toss so they’ll be driving toward the north end zone in the final quarter. It’s a miserable spot for Missouri -- it’s where Nebraska got the “Kick-six,” where Colorado scored on five downs, where a 39-yard field goal to beat Notre Dame died. It’s also where Andrew Baggett’s kick to send the 2013 game to triple overtime slammed into the upright.
5. FROSH ON FROSH
Tuesday’s news that Mauk was suspended put Drew Lock in place. Like Nunez, Lock was a highly regarded prep player who’s had limited experience thus far. Mauk was hearing boos from his own fans so perhaps it’s what’s needed. Could this one come down to which rookie QB makes the fewest mistakes?
RECRUITING THE SHOW-ME STATE
The lone Gamecock from Missouri is freshman tight end Kyle Markway is a 6-4, 254-pounder who graduated from St. John Vianney in St. Louis. Markway has seen limited action in his first season, primarily on special teams. Markway said about 50 family members have contacted him asking for tickets.
THREE MISSOURI PLAYERS TO WATCH
1. Senior running back Tyler Hunt has caught four passes this year, yet leads the team in receiving yards with 166. He is averaging 41.5 yards per reception and also has 10 carries for 32 yards.
2. Senior linebacker Kentrell Brothers has 52 tackles through four games, which is more than twice as many as anyone else for Missouri. He also leads the team in interceptions with two. He is recovering from an ankle injury.
3. Missouri always seems to have strong pass rushers, and this year is no different. Charles Harris has 9.5 tackles for loss, three sacks and three quarterback hurries. He’ll provide a challenge to USC’s offensive line.
WR – NEAL (Jeffery)
WR – P. COOPER (Belton)
WR – GOOGER OR HEARD
LT – SHELL (Pellage)
LG – MATULIS (Park)
C – BAILEY (Stadnik)
RG – SPORT (Stanley)
RT – ZANDI (Camper)
TE – ADAMS (August OR Markway OR Hurst)
QB – NUNEZ (Orth, Scarnecchia)
FB – BEDENBAUGH
TB – CARSON (Da. Williams, Talley)
DE – D. JOHNSON (Whitlow, Dixon, Blackshear)
DT – SAWYER (Stallworth, Griffin)
NT – DIXON JR. (Dukes, Lamin)
DE – LEWIS (C. Cooper, English)
MLB – HOLLOMAN (Allen-Williams)
WLB – MOORE (Walton)
SLB – BRYANT (Hawkins)
SPUR – GURLEY (Sasser)
LCB – HARRIS (Fenton, Elder)
FS – I. JOHNSON (Moody)
SS – DIGGS (D. Smith)
RCB – MCWILLIAMS (J. Smith, Boyd)
USC SPECIAL TEAMS
KO – ARD (Fry)
PK – FRY (Ard)
P – KELLY (Almond)
KR – CARSON (Talley)
PR – P. COOPER
LSN – DR. WILLIAMS (McGriff)
H – KELLY (Ard)