Quarterback Stephen Garcia completed 12-of-17 passes for 165 yards and no interceptions, but he couldn’t escape a chiding from his head coach.
“He started hesitating again,” Spurrier said. “Even the deep ball to Alshon (Jeffery, a 40-yard completion), he waited and waited and waited. I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, he is going to get hit. Throw it.’ He didn’t hesitate last week, but he got in there and hesitated this week. We’ll work on that.”
Garcia, who missed a wide open Jason Barnes for what would have been a touchdown in the first half, acknowledged he didn’t get the ball out as quickly as he hoped.
He was sacked five times and bruised his throwing hand early in the second half when he hit a Georgia player’s helmet.
“I am still trying to get used to the speed,” Garcia said. “It was the first SEC game, and the speed is a lot different playing Georgia than Southern Miss.”
The Gamecocks attempted 17 passes, compared with 30 last week vs. Southern Miss.
Fewer passes don't bother Garcia as long as the team wins, he said.
"If we win, it doesn't really matter," Garcia said. "I could throw three passes, it doesn't matter."
The 52 rushes against Georgia on Saturday were the second-most for USC under Spurrier. The team ran the ball 35 times last week.
"We thought we had to mix in some more throws than we did," Spurrier said. "When we tried to throw, Stephen was usually scrambling around. So me must not have had many good plays on."
Garcia credited Marcus Lattimore and teammates for the victory.
"Between him and the O-line, that's what won us the game, hands down. Them and the defense," he said. "I guess I only threw 17 times. Marcus had 37 carries, and that's huge for a freshman to come for his first SEC game and have that kind of production.
"We've definitely improved as a team as opposed to last year," Garcia said. "So we're just moving forward. That's the only way we can go right now."
Shaq Wilson still waiting
Johnson has not given up on junior linebacker Shaq Wilson returning to the lineup this season. Wilson missed his second straight game Saturday due to a severely pulled hamstring.
“He feels more confident in it right now,” Johnson said. “I really hope he can play against Auburn (on Sept. 25). I would hope he can play this year.”