South Carolina takes the field at Belk Bowl
South Carolina football is looking to finish off the 2018 season with an eighth win in the Belk Bowl against Virginia. Here’s what you need to know about the game:
What time do the Gamecocks play today?
Who: Virginia (7-5) vs. South Carolina (7-5)
When: Noon Saturday
Series history: South Carolina leads 21-12-1. USC won the last meeting 31-7, upsetting the No. 15 Cavaliers in 2003
TV: ABC (Adam Amin, play-by-play; Anthony Becht, analysis; Rocky Boiman, sideline)
Radio: 107.5 FM (Todd Ellis, play-by-play; Tommy Suggs, analysis; Langston Moore, sideline) ... See all the radio affiliates around the state here.
National: ESPN Radio (Taylor Zarzour, play-by-play; Matt Stinchcomb, analysis; Kris Budden, sideline)
Satellite radio: Sirius 94, XM 210
Line: Gamecocks by 5
Weather: Mostly sunny, light north northwest wind. High near 63. Temperature around 59 at kickoff, 61 through the game. Chance of rain below 10 percent.
What’s at stake
The Gamecocks are looking to reach eight wins for the second year in a row. Through the bowl week, Will Muschamp has reiterated the simple mantra from his Virginia counterpart: “eight is better than seven.”
Virginia is looking to cap Bronco Mendenhall’s second season with a win. At Virginia, his team went from two wins to six last year and now sit at seven this season.
South Carolina will have a chance to show its offense is more than just Deebo Samuel. The Gamecocks are without the top play-maker and facing a stingy pass defense.
Opp. Yds Rush/Game
Opp. Yds. Pass/Game
Opp. Total Yds/Game
South Carolina players to watch
1. South Carolina quarterback Jake Bentley will have to face a good pass defense without dynamic top target Deebo Samuel. Bentley blossomed across the second half of this season, posting 2,953 yards on the year with 27 scores and 12 interceptions.
2. With Samuel out, much more falls on Shi Smith. Bryan Edwards steps up as a No. 1 player, but he’s done that before. Smith will have to help full Samuel’s speed element and what he did on jet sweeps. Smith has 39 catches for 597 yards and four touchdowns.
3. Linebacker Sherrod Greene has been up and down in his first season as a starter. He’ll be key in helping corral quarterback Bryce Perkins, a 1,000-yard rusher and solid passer in his own right. For the season, Greene has 67 tackles, one interception and once forced fumble.
Virginia players to watch
1. Virginia’s seven wins are its most since 2011 and a big reason why is Perkins. The former Arizona State Sun Devil transferred to UVa from junior college last January and has been the the dual-threat QB Mendenhall desired. Perkins has already set a school record with 3,314 yards of offense.
2. Perkins’ favorite target is Olamide Zaccheaus. The All-ACC selection is Virginia’s all-time leader in receptions. He’s got 81 grabs for 958 yards and six scores this season, making the speedy 5-foot-8 Zaccheaus one to watch against USC’s depleted secondary.
3. The best NFL prospect in this game might be on the Virginia side. Cornerback Bryce Hall is projected as a first round pick, according to CBS Sports. The physical 6-1, 200-pounder leads the nation with 20 pass breakups.
South Carolina depth chart
WR - Josh Vann (Chad Terrell)
WR - Bryan Edwards (Chavis Dawkins)
WR - Shi Smith (Randrecous Davis)
OT - Dylan Wonnum (Eric Douglas)
OG - Donell Stanley (Blake Camper)
C - Hank Manos (Chandler Farrell)
OG - Sadarius Hutcherson (Jordan Rhodes)
OT - Dennis Daley (Malik Young)
QB - Jake Bentley (Michael Scarnecchia, Dakereon Joyner)
RB - Rico Dowdle OR Ty’Son Williams OR Mon Denson
TE - Jacob August (Kyle Markway)
TE - K.C. Crosby (Kiel Pollard)
DE - Bryson Allen-Williams (Brad Johnson)
DT - Keir Thomas (Rick Sandidge OR Josh Belk)
DT - Kobe Smith (J.J. Enagbare)
DE - Shameik Blackshear (J.J. Enagbarer)
WLB - Sherrod Greene (Ernest Jones)
MLB - T.J. Brunson (Damani Staley)
SLB - Rosendo Louis (Ernest Jones)
CB - Israel Mukuamu (Jaycee Horn)
S - Steven Montac (Jaylin Dickerson)
S - R.J. Roderick (Jonathan Gipson)
CB - Rashad Fenton (AJ Turner)
Nickel - Jaycee Horn (Steven Montac)
PK - Parker White (Alexander Woznick)
KO - Alexander Woznick (Parker White)
P - Joseph Charlton (Michael Almond)
LS - Ben Asbury (Matthew Smith)
KOR - A.J. Turner
PR - Bryan Edwards
H - Danny Gordon (Michael Almond)
Andrew Ramspacher contributed to this report