South Carolina plays Missouri on Saturday. Here’s what you need to know about the game.
▪ Who: South Carolina (4-4, 2-4 SEC) vs. Missouri (2-6, 0-4 SEC)
▪ When: 4 p.m. Saturday
▪ Where: Williams-Brice Stadium (80,250), Columbia
▪ Series history: Missouri has won four of the six meetings between the two schools
▪ TV: SEC Network (Tom Hart, play-by-play; Andre Ware, analysis; Cole Cubelic, sideline)
▪ Radio: 107.5 FM (Todd Ellis, play-by-play; Tommy Suggs, analysis; Langston Moore, sideline)
▪ Satellite radio: Sirius 113/XM 191
▪ Line: South Carolina by 7
▪ Weather: Sunny, with a high near 68 at kickoff, then close to 60 or upper 50s as the game ends.
The Columbia Cup
With both schools calling a Columbia home, the Columbia Cup is on the line in the seventh meeting between the schools. South Carolina is coming off back-to-back wins and has surpassed its win total of last season. A South Carolina win over Missouri would bring the Columbia Cup back to South Carolina for the first time since 2013 and give the Gamecocks a three-game winning streak for the first time since September 2014 when they defeated East Carolina, Georgia and Vanderbilt in consecutive weeks.
Bowl in sight?
South Carolina suddenly finds itself with a great deal of control over its bowl fate. If it sweeps Mizzou and Western Carolina, it’s going to the postseason. That means this Tigers squad, itself searching for a signature win with a new coach, becomes the No. 1 stumbling block in the way of that goal.
It’s Homecoming Week at the University of South Carolina. The homecoming parade is 3 pm Friday. Later on Friday, A Block Party will take place at Foundation Square (the intersection of Green and Lincoln streets), with a pep rally, music from the decades featuring the band, Simply Irresistible, and fireworks, beginning at 6:30 pm. The My Carolina Alumni Association hosts a homecoming tailgate beginning at 1 p.m. Saturday at Gamecock Park.
The lone Gamecock from the Show-Me State is sophomore tight end Kyle Markway, a 6-4, 254-pounder who graduated from St. John Vianney in St. Louis. South Carolina tight ends coach Pat Washington served on Missouri’s staff from 2013-15.
The teams, by the numbers
Opp. Yds Rush/Game
Opp. Yds Pass/Game
Opp. Total Yds/Game
South Carolina players to watch
1. Running back Rico Dowdle: The true freshman set career highs with 27 rushes and 127 yards rushing in the win over Tennessee. It was the most rushes in a game by a Gamecock since Kenny Miles carried 27 times against Wofford in 2012.
2. Kicker Elliott Fry: A record is almost certain to fall Saturday at Williams-Brice. Elliott Fry has scored 329 career points, one shy of the school record of 330, held by Collin Mackie (1987-90). A field goal or two extra points, and Fry is the new record-holder.
3. Defensive backs Chaz Elder and Steven Montac: These two are likely to play key roles in the first half Saturday as safety D.J. Smith serves a half-game suspension for a targeting penalty against Tennessee.
Missouri players to watch
1. Quarterback Drew Lock: Last year a wobbly true freshman thrown into the fire, Lock has progressed as a sophomore. At the helm of the Tigers’ hurry-up spread, he’s thrown for 2,215 yards, run for 139 more and tossed 18 touchdown, though 10 came in blowouts of Delaware State and Eastern Michigan.
2. Wide receiver J’Mon Moore: He’s only got seven more receptions than the No. 2 pass catcher, but he’s a workhorse for the passing game. He’d been targeted nearly twice as often as any other player on the roster before the Kentucky game and has 551 yards and six touchdowns on the season.
3. Defensive back Aarion Penton: The Mizzou pass defense is probably one of the things it does best, and Penton is key there. The junior cornerback leads the team with nine pass breakups, plus three picks and 30 total tackles.
Projected South Carolina depth chart
Our projection for the South Carolina football depth chart.
WR – SAMUEL (Googer)
WR – EDWARDS (Banks)
LT – ZANDI (Park)
LG – BAILEY (Stanley or Park)
C – KNOTT (Helms)
RG – HELMS (Stanley)
RT – YOUNG (Camper)
TE – HURST (August)
TE – Crosby (Pollard)
QB – BENTLEY (McIlwain)
RB – DOWDLE (Williams or Turner)
DE – LEWIS (Sawyer)
DT – STALLWORTH (Griffin)
DT – JONES (Thomas)
DE – ENGLISH (Wonnum)
LB – WALTON (Bryant)
LB – HOLLOMAN (Brunson)
LB – ALLEN-WILLIAMS (Pittman)
CB – LAMMONS (Fenton)
S – MONTAC (Elder)
S – MOODY (Elder)
CB – KING (Fenton)
NICK – WILDER (Diggs)
PK – FRY (Charlton)
P – KELLY (Charlton)
LS – DR. WILLIAMS (McGriff)
KR – TURNER (Fenton)
PR – LAMMONS (Samuel)
H – KELLY