Open practice observations: Gamecocks' depth chart takes shape
Will Muschamp made another stump speech Thursday night.
South Carolina’s first-year head coach addressed the My Carolina Alumni Association, and the fans wanted to talk about offense. Specifically, the fans wanted to talk about quarterbacks.
“I wish I knew (who the starter will be Sept. 1 against Vanderbilt),” Muschamp said in response to the first question from the crowd. “I’m not as worried about that position as some people might be. I know the guy we put out there is going to be a winner.”
Just because Muschamp says he’s not worried about the quarterback position, where Perry Orth, Brandon McIlwain and Jake Bentley are competing for the starting job, doesn’t mean he doesn’t have some concerns on offense it seems.
The most interesting part of his talk Thursday night was this: “We are going to be drastically different offensively next year. We are going to adapt next fall.”
What that seems to be saying is that the offensive coaching staff can’t do all it would like to do this year because of its personnel. The comment came in the context of talking about running backs.
“I don’t know if we’re going to have a featured back,” he said. “We’re going to be a little bit by committee.”
Redshirt freshman A.J. Turner continues to be the top back, but Muschamp pointed out that his size – 195 pounds according to Turner last week – is not ideal for an every down back. South Carolina finished 11th in the SEC in offense last year for a reason, and that reason wasn’t that they didn’t have a pretty good offensive coach. It may be a year or two before the Gamecocks improve that ranking much.
Here are some other things Muschamp touched on Thursday night:
▪ On the recruiting front, he said, there is “good news I know about.”
▪ Starting cornerback Chris Lammons is the third safety in the rotation.
▪ The Gamecocks really like freshman wide receivers Randrecous Davis, Korey Banks and Chavis Dawkins and freshman tight end Keil Pollard. “We hit on all the freshman wide receivers,” he said.
▪ Muschamp wants the Gamecocks to improve their overall team speed in order to have better special teams.
▪ Sophomore Lorenzo Nunez, who was moved from quarterback to wide receiver coming into camp, is still learning the ropes. “He’s never played receiver in his life,” Muschamp said. “He’s not exactly what he wants to be as a receiver right now but his attitude has been wonderful.”