A weekend away from football didn’t help Steve Spurrier forget his team’s four-game SEC losing streak.
“I think I would rather have had a ball game that we beat somebody (before the weekend bye),” Spurrier said Sunday. “I’d feel a lot better. Some games are harder than others to get over, one play here or there, one decision a person could make could have affected it, but we have had three very similar like this. Just gotta shake it off and bounce back and get your guys ready to play.”
South Carolina (4-5, 2-5 SEC) plays Florida (5-3, 4-3) at noon on Saturday in Gainesville, Fla. The Gamecocks have won at least three conference games in each of Spurrier’s previous nine seasons at the school. Spurrier hasn’t lost five straight conference games in one season in his 25-year college coaching career.
“Our staff is in here today working, and we’re in a pretty good mood, I think you could say, as far as what has happened to us,” Spurrier said. “Hopefully, we can correct all these errors we are making late in the game.”
South Carolina’s players took Friday, Saturday and Sunday off and will reconvene Monday afternoon to begin preparing for the Gators.
“We didn’t beat them up too much,” Spurrier said. “We told them to take a good long weekend and let’s come back and try to finish as strong as we possibly can this last three. We’ll see what kind of energy we get out of them tomorrow.”
Spurrier declined to elaborate on his plans for the 2015 season, referring reporters to last week’s interview with The State, in which he said “the plan is” to return next season.
“I am going to quit commenting on that,” he said. “I commented on that last week. I think that’s about what I’ll say.”
The Gators have their own coaching questions for next season. Florida coach Will Muschamp entered the season on the hot seat, and it only got hotter when the Gators opened the season 2-3 in the SEC. However, they have beaten Georgia and Vanderbilt in the past two weeks and remain in the race for the division championship.
“I consider (Muschamp) a friend, a good friend in coaching,” Spurrier said. “I am pulling for him to make it down there. Of course, I am pulling for us to beat him down there, but he’s a good person, good coach. They have sort of come together these last couple of weeks since the Georgia game.”
Extra Points: Senior tight end Rory Anderson “should be back” against Florida after missing the past two games with a strained left triceps muscle, Spurrier said. Starting linebacker Skai Moore (ankle), starting spur Sharrod Golighty (wisdom teeth), reserve spur Jordan Diggs (shoulder) and reserve defensive end Mason Harris (knee) also are expected to play. Reserve defensive tackle Abu Lamin was in a car accident this weekend and will not play against the Gators, Spurrier said. “He’s OK, but he got scrapped up pretty good,” Spurrier said. Sophomore guard Cody Waldrop remains sidelined by a sprained right knee that has kept him out of the past six games and could miss the rest of the season, Spurrier said. “It obviously has not quite come around,” Spurrier said. “I need to ask the trainer if he needs surgery or what. That one has taken a while.” Spurrier opened his teleconference by addressing his post-Tennessee news conference, when he left without taking questions. “I think the first thing I need to do is I need to apologize for not talking after that last ball game we had here at Williams-Brice,” he said. “I came in there and made a quick statement and hit the road, and I should have stayed there and took a few questions and faced the music so I apologize for that. I’ll try not to let that ever happen again.”