Dave Bartoo is a smart guy.
He’s the founder of CFB Matrix, which takes a hard look at college football and predicts outcomes based on data – specifically a TLC formula that stands for Talent, Location and Coaching Effect. I asked Bartoo about the Gamecocks this week, and here’s what he expects from South Carolina’s 2015 schedule.
"Win, Win. USC has a much higher talent rank than both Week one and two opponents," he said.
So that’s a 2-0 start, pretty much exactly what South Carolina fans are hoping for.
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"Week 3 -- loss at Georgia (Home with more talent) then another two-game winning streak over UCF and Missouri."
Alright, so there’s 4-1, not bad so far, but now for the bad news.
"LSU, at Tennessee, at A&M and Florida in the next five weeks is flat brutal. Anything better than 1-3 is going to be a nice result."
A 1-3 record during that stretch would leave the Gamecocks 6-4 under this scenario (assuming a win over Vanderbilt, which we’re going to assume). Then there’s a win over The Citadel, no offense Citadel that would leave the Gamecocks 7-4 heading into the final game of the season
What does Bartoo expect from that based on his TLC rankings.
"A playoff run spoiling win over Clemson," he said.
So an 8-4 regular season with a season-ending victory that costs the Tigers a spot in the CFB Playoff. I don’t know a Gamecocks fan that wouldn’t sign up for that on the spot.