Josh Kendall

Why one SEC Network host thinks South Carolina will beat Georgia this year

If South Carolina can upset Georgia on Sept. 8 at Williams-Brice Stadium, SEC Network host Peter Burns can say he called it early.

“I am picking South Carolina,” Burns told The State on Monday, the first day of SEC Media Days, which are being held this year at the College Football Hall of Fame. “Obviously, we are way too early and barring injuries and what not, I think that’s a win for South Carolina.”

The Gamecocks and Bulldogs will meet in the second week of the season at Williams-Brice Stadium in a game that will establish the early leader in the SEC Eastern Division. Georgia, the defending conference champion, is expected to be favored by Las Vegas and most analysts.

“When I heard (college football handicapper) Danny Sheridan’s comments about it was going to be two touchdowns, I laughed at that,” Burns said. “I can’t imagine that because (South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp) does such a good job. I don’t think Will has the defense he wants yet, but I think Will over the last two years has shown he knows where his deficiencies are, and he can mask those really well. To think that a Georgia team that may be more talented overall as a roster can come in there and whup South Carolina, I am not buying any of that.”

The Gamecocks new, faster-paced offense will play a big factor in the game, Burns believes.

“Out of all the games I said I wanted to watch and had to buy a ticket for, Georgia going down to Columbia I think is going to be incredible,” he said. “Will and (Georgia coach Kirby Smart) know each other throughout the years so I think that’ll be a great chess match. I don’t think Georgia’s going to get pushed a lot against Austin Peay in Week 1 so now with that fast-paced offense that Will and those guys are going to run, I think it’s prime for it. That’s a game that I think that if the tempo gets going early and you can punch them in the mouth, not saying that Georgia can’t respond, I just think we Jake Bentley and that crowd, you get up there 10-0 and that place will be rocking.”