South Carolina freshman quarterback Lorenzo Nunez did not practice Tuesday due to a sprained shoulder suffered during Saturday’s loss to Missouri.
“He should be OK by the end of the week,” head coach Steve Spurrier said.
Nunez will need to show Spurrier he can throw during the practice week if he is going to start Saturday against No. 7 LSU, Spurrier said. Nunez, who has made two career starts, looked Saturday like he could use as much practice time as he can get.
“He wanted to take off (and run) every play as you could tell in the game,” Spurrier said. “We need to coach him up a lot better and get the ball out of his hands when he goes back there. He sort of reverted back to taking off a little early the last game. That’s part of being a freshman and part of being a very good runner, I guess.
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Nunez is the Gamecocks leading passer (31 of 51 for 374 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptiosn) and rusher (45 carries for 299 yards) after five games. Junior Perry Orth and redshirt freshman Michael Scarnecchia will “get ready” also, Spurrier said.
“We’ll wait until the end of the week to see where everyone is,” Spurrier said.
Senior running back Brandon Wilds, who has missed the last two games due to a rib injury, could return Saturday. Wilds wore a yellow non-contact jersey Tuesday.
“I think he should be ready,” Spurrier said. “He should be OK by this weekend. If he is, he’ll start the game.”
The Gamecocks have averaged 164 rushing yards in the two games Wilds missed.
Center Alan Knott, who has missed the last two weeks due to a high ankle sprain, returned to practice Tuesday. His replacement in the lineup, freshman Zack Bailey, did not practice with a hamstring injury.
Wide receiver Deebo Samuel, who has three catches for 30 yards this season, did not practice and remains questionable due to a hamstring injury.
“We’re just waiting to see if he comes out there,” Spurrier said. “If the trainer says he can run and he says he can run, then we’ll fit him in there somewhere.”
Defensive tackle Gerald Dixon (knee) also sat out Tuesday’s practice. Other players who were injured or wore yellow jerseys were: TE Connor Redmond (back), QB Gage Pucci (knee), OL Cory Helms (shoulder), and C Cody Waldrop (ankle). QB Connor Mitch (shoulder) is out 1-3 weeks. WR Shaq Davidson (knee) and WR Jerad Washington (left leg) are out for the season.
The last time South Carolina began a season 0-3 in the SEC was 2005, Spurrier’s first season at the school. On Tuesday, he was asked if he saw any similarities between this team and that team.
“No not really, not too much. I guess that’s not too encouraging words right there,” he said. “I don’t know. We’ll see. We’re going to make some changes.
“Let’s go try to have fun. We can’t do anything about the last five games. Let’s go try and see if we can really go play this game well. That’s what we’re going to try and do.”
Sophomore Chris Lammons could return to the starting lineup this week, defensive co-coordinator Jon Hoke said after Tuesday’s practice.
- David Cloninger contributed