Perry Orth stands to start his second straight game when Vanderbilt visits South Carolina on Saturday.
“Perry Orth has got this team to rally around him, so to speak,” coach Shawn Elliott said on the SEC coaches teleconference on Wednesday.
Lorenzo Nunez, who didn’t play at LSU after his sprained shoulder wouldn’t allow him to lift his arm over his head, is practicing but is a wait-and-see for the game. Connor Mitch, out since the Kentucky game when he separated his shoulder (and was in and out of the hospital with an infection in a bruised hip), could play.
“It’s just kind of getting back into the swing of things,” said Mitch, who practiced for the third straight day. “You know, four weeks off, not throwing, not doing anything, you got to get back into rhythm.”
G.A. Mangus said that a decision on Brandon Wilds’ availability will be made on Thursday morning, although he has been practicing well. Having him would give another running threat beside Elliott’s preferred zone-read, and Mitch could help with that as well.
Although Orth’s rushing shouldn’t be discounted.
“They all can do that,” Mangus said. “They have to read it and when it requires them to run the football, they need to run the football.”
The Music Man
Elliott’s impact was already felt at practice on Tuesday. Speakers played music throughout the session.
“I think music plays a huge role. It moves people, and I think we needed a little bit of movement,” Elliott said. “I wanted our players to get more energetic, take their minds off some things. What better way to do it than let’s go out there and get some tunes on?”
The DJ ranged from James Brown to Papa Roach. DMX split a hair-metal duo from Guns N’ Roses and Metallica. Elliott said the routine would probably stay.
“You see everybody kind of light up, you see their feet start boppin’ a little bit, their hands start moving, their heads start moving,” Elliott said. “The kids bought into it until the very, very end. We’ll look at possibly a permanent decision on that, but right now we’re just going to go with the flow and see how we do.”
There was a “quiet period” in the middle of Wednesday’s session.
On the headset
Mangus will remain on the sidelines and call plays, with input from Steve Spurrier Jr., who will be in the press box. Mangus stressed that is still a group effort.
“Everybody will,” he said. “I’m going to be on the sidelines and call it, and in between series, we all get together and see what they’re doing.”
Saturday is USC’s annual “Power in Pink” game to promote the fight against breast cancer. Players can wear a variety of pink gear.
Red cross report
Players who were injured or wore yellow jerseys were: LB Sherrod Pittman (leg), SS Antoine Wilder (leg), WR Christian Owens (left foot), WR Deebo Samuel (hamstring), TE Connor Redmond (back), QB Gage Pucci (knee) and C Cody Waldrop (ankle). WR Shaq Davidson (knee) and WR Jerad Washington (left leg) are out for the season.
Gamecocks vs. Commodores
Who: South Carolina (2-4, 0-4 SEC) vs. Vanderbilt (2-3, 0-3)
When: 4 p.m., Saturday
Where: Williams-Brice Stadium
TV: SEC Network
Line: USC by 2 1/2