Many of you have read the projected 2011 preseason rankings by now. In my projections, the South Carolina Gamecocks look to be a top ten preseason pick. Of course I had an issue with this and said that is way too high and they likely will not be ranked by the end of the season. Lots of people agree with me. They just can’t seem to get things to click at South Carolina. They always pull off one big win each year and for some reason that gives them validation and credibility in the eyes of pollsters. I’m not fooled.
South Carolina proves in their bowl games they just are an average team. They prove it in the regular season as well. They are average, have always been average and will always be average. The other day a reader took offense with this statement by going to my contact form and sending me this scathing message:
“you suck my friend as well as lee courso ,who is now eating his words!!with all americans and soon to be CLOWNY the gamecocks are a team on the rise!! I have a feeling your tenure ie about to expire as a sports writer who dosen’t research the present day ! Wake up and smell the coffee,there is a new sherriff in town and he is CKCKY!!!”
I just copied and pasted exactly as is. Perhaps this is a Florida “plant” who is only trying to make South Carolina fans look bad. I don’t know. But if Roddy really is who said this and really is a South Carolina fan, then I’m sorry Gamecocks. I’m sorry that these are the type of fans you have to play for. It’s no wonder you are always mediocre, your fans are apparently too ignorant to properly spell and when they look at the scoreboard they have no idea who is actually winning. Half the time they must boo the home team when they are winning comfortably. It’s quite sad.
But I guess I will eat my words because CLOWNY (ie: Jadeveon Clowney) and the supposed All-Americans at South Carolina are on the rise. Keep in mind there were only two All-Americans on South Carolina last year, Alshon Jeffery (2nd team) and Stephon Gilmore (3rd team). And I can guarantee you the 5 stars or no, no one in the SEC is going to be afraid of a freshman, even if he is very talented.
As usual, South Carolina has no quarterback, so they can have a second team All-American wide receiver, but he can’t do much without someone to pass to him. Their most viable starter got drunk as a sailor and screwed up any chance of playing this year.
The only thing they have going for them is that they only have one road non-conference game, the season opener at East Carolina. Their other non-conference games are all at home, which would be helpful normally except based on my interaction with South Carolina fans I’m not sure if they know which team to root for. They do have road SEC games at Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi State though, none of those look very winnable at the moment.
We’ll see though. Steve Spurrer is a coach I respect a lot, and they do have Lattimore coming back, as well as a pretty stout defense. South Carolina always has a pretty good team, they just tend to be underachievers for whatever reason. Could this be the year they turn it around and go to the BCS? I believe they have the talent to do so, but then again they always have and haven’t made it yet, so I doubt this year will be any different.