USC Gamecocks Football

South Carolina practice observations: The many missing faces

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Some USC players sat down with us to discuss what it's like being part of the team. The Gamecocks are doing a training camp before the season begins.
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Some USC players sat down with us to discuss what it's like being part of the team. The Gamecocks are doing a training camp before the season begins.

The South Carolina football team opened a portion camp practice to the media Thursday for the final time this summer. Will Muschamp’s team had a few pro scouts on hand as they went through the start of a humid morning.

A few observations:

The list of players spotted working out with the injured remained the same with wide receiver Tyquan Johnson, wide receiver Chavis Dawkins, corner John Dixon, defensive end Keir Thomas and Buck defensive end Brad Johnson. There was one player not in a jersey with his arm in a sling.

But that doesn’t quite cover the depth of players absent or not spotted once practice was opened. That group included tailback Rico Dowdle, offensive lineman Donell Stanley, defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw, wide receiver Bryan Edwards, safety R.J. Roderick and tight end Kiel Pollard. Most of them were not there Wednesday as well. Stanley has a back issue and Pollard a shoulder, but the rest of the injuries are unknown, though Roderick was spotted leaving the indoor facility as stretching began.

Defensive end Kingsley Enagbare was back out on the field. Tyreek Johnson, who has been out at points, was also back.

Wide receiver Randrecous Davis, who was in a yellow non-contact jersey on Wednesday, was back in regular uniform Thursday.

The start of practice had a heavy fundamentals bent.

The quarterbacks and running backs worked on a drill where they handed off and then balls were immediately pitched to QBs on the run. The order of tailbacks in that drill was Mon Denson, Tavien Feaster, Kevin Harris.

There appeared to be a lot of emphasis on ball security, with plenty of coaches taking whacks at players trying to dislodge it.

Near the end, we saw quarterbacks first throwing routes to receivers lightly covered by staffers and then working on various routes on air at the goal line. Some quick snags and fades to the back corner in there.

The Gamecocks will practice Friday afternoon before photo day, then have their final scrimmage Saturday. Coordinators Travaris Robinson and Bryan McClendon will speak with the media next week.

Classes are set to begin Aug. 22 and three days later, game week officially starts for UNC. Muschamp’s first in-season press conference will be Aug. 27.

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