Bryan Edwards wasn’t in the mood for moral victories Saturday and neither were his South Carolina teammates.
Edwards had one of his best days as a Gamecocks against No. 2 Alabama. The senior caught a career-high nine passes for 79 yards and was targeted 11 times.
Edwards, who moved up to No. 3 on the school’s all-time receptions record, didn’t take comfort in his big day because the Gamecocks lost 47-23 in the team’s first meeting with the Crimson Tide since 2010.
“I’m a competitor and we lost. That is what it is,” Edwards said. “I knew I was going to get targets and just had to take advantage of those. I wished we could have hit that double move down the middle, but it is what it is.
“But like I don’t take no moral victories or things like that.”
Edwards’ teammates echoed his comments. Senior center Donnell Stanley was emotional, almost in tears, during the postgame news conference.
“You want to go out and play hard, but at the end of the day we didn’t get the job done,” Stanley said.
While Edwards and Stanley didn’t claim any moral victories, they did have high praise for freshman quarterback Ryan Hilinski, who was making his second start and threw for 324 yards against the Tide.
Edwards pulled aside Hilinski during the postgame handshakes on the field and gave him words of encouragement. Hilinski also shared an emotional moment with his brother Kelly at the edge of the stands.
Start me up
Former South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia got the announced crowd of 81,954 at Williams-Brice Stadium into a frenzy as the honorary starter for the game.
Garcia led the crowd in the traditional “Game! Cocks!” chant after a video montage of Garcia highlights was shown that set to AC/DC’s “Black in Black.”
Garcia was the quarterback the last time USC played Alabama in 2010. The Gamecocks beat No. 1 Crimson Tide that day for the program’s only win over a top-ranked team.
Randrecous Davis and Brad Johnson didn’t play Saturday, and Gamecocks coach Will Muschamp doesn’t expect them to play until at least after the bye week against Georgia on Oct. 12.
Davis has been bothered by an ankle injury and Johnson is sidelined with a groin injury.
... Parker White’s 48-yard field goal in the fourth quarter was his career long.
... South Carolina held Alabama to 76 yards rushing. That was the Crimson Tide’s lowest rushing total since they had 66 against Arkansas on Oct. 11, 2014.
... Defensive back RJ Roderick had his first career sack in the first quarter.