USC Gamecocks Football

Chisolm's unlikely journey takes wrong turn

ATLANTA | USC offensive line coach Shawn Elliott doesn’t expect senior left guard Garrett Chisolm to play in Friday’s game after Chisolm reinjured his sprained right knee during Tuesday’s practice.

It would be a tough way to end one of the most improbable careers in school history. Chisolm, a native of Charleston, walked on to the team last year and earned a starting spot after two games. He has started 12 games this season. Chisolm, whose father died during the season, was named second-team All-SEC by the league’s coaches.

“When I found out he injured his knee, I said, ‘Boy, that is devastating if he can’t play in that game,’” Elliott said. “To come from where he has come from and then to take this away from him here is a disheartening event. It’s something that meant so much to him.”

Elliott expects an emotional meeting with his offensive linemen before the game, he said.

“You don’t have to win the game for (Chisolm), but you want to go out and play hard for him,” Elliott said. “When we are in there in that locker room, who knows what might be said.”

Senior Terrence Campbell, an Atlanta native, will start in Chisolm’s place, Elliott said. Campbell has started one game this season and 12 in his career.

Share and share alike?

Ellis Johnson, South Carolina’s assistant head coach for defense, said Wednesday he used one of his ACC contacts to help prepare for Florida State, specifically the Seminoles’ two quarterbacks, Christian Ponder and EJ Manuel.

Johnson said sharing information is common among coaches but added that sometimes a school in an opponent’s conference is unwilling to share.

“If Oregon called and wanted to talk about Auburn, I wouldn’t be that excited about sharing that because I’m an SEC guy,” he said.

However, Johnson knew he would get cooperation from Clemson co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach Charlie Harbison, an old friend.

“The guy I was talking to, this 6-year-old over here was named after him, so we are pretty close,” Johnson said, referring to his son, Charlie.

Bad memories

Center T.J. Johnson and defensive tackle Travian Roberston spoke at a news conference Wednesday, and both were asked about their reaction to being in the Georgia Dome for the first time since losing 56-17 to Auburn in the SEC title game.

“I am never going to forget the experience, but the loss itself we had to let go,” Robertson said.

Asked specifically what he would most like to change about that game, Johnson replied, “the score.”


Elliott, who coached at the FBS level this season for the first time, was scheduled to have dinner Wednesday night with Florida State offensive line coach Rick Trickett, a 38-year veteran. The meal was arranged by the bowl, said Elliott, who added he didn’t expect to talk football.

“Sometimes you have to get away from this football and clear your head, and that’s probably what we’ll do tonight,” Elliott said.

VIDEO: Wednesday bowl report

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