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november 11, 2015 • Volume 37 • Issue 22 • $1.50

High Expectations

Postmaster: Time sensitive material. Please expedite

Publication mailed from Columbia on Monday, Nov. 9

South Carolina men, women tip off regular-seasons this week

2 • Spurs & Feathers

Spurs & Feathers Published by Aiken Communications, Inc.

Contact Us: 326 Rutland Drive N.W. PO Box 456 Aiken, SC, 29801 To subscribe: Please call 800-559-2311; annual subscription price is $50 Ellen Priest Publisher Aiken Communications, Inc. Tim O’Briant General Manager (803) 335-1400 Ext. 500 Brian Hand Executive Editor (803) 335-1399 Ext. 506 Ed Girardeau Contributing Editor/ Advertising Account Executive (803) 646-9807 Dee Taylor Advertising Director (803) 644-2371 Kathy Boyette Advertising Sales Manager (803) 295-3654 Brooks Rogers Advertising Representative (803) 446-4022 Reporter Kyle Heck Photographers Allen Sharpe, Jenny Dilworth and Juan Blas Cover Design Brian Hand (photos by Allen Sharpe) Postal Information: SPURS & FEATHERS (USPS 12779) (ISSN 7454368X) is published 23 times annually. The frequency is monthly from December to February, bi-weekly in March, monthly in April, bi-weekly in May, biweekly in June, monthly in July and August and weekly from September through December 2. SPURS & FEATHERS also publishes two slick-paper magazine issues — one in April and one in August. The annual subscription price is $50 for non Gamecock Club members. Members of the Gamecock Club receive a discounted subscription as a member benefit. Spurs & Feathers is published by Aiken Communications, Inc., 326 Rutland Drive NW, Aiken, SC, 29801-4010. Periodicals postage paid at Columbia, SC Postmaster: Send changes to SPURS & FEATHERS, PO Box 456, Aiken, SC, 29802.

November 11, 2015

What is a normal week like for Spurs & Feathers? by brian hand Executive Editor

Will you get a chance to breathe this week? We hear this question pretty much every week. And rightfully so as every week there is a ton going on in Gamecock Country. The question we get the most though is: what is a normal week like for Spurs & Feathers? We wish we knew. But in the end, that’s the fun part as every week and really every day you never know what is going to happen. The Internet and particularly now social media has forever changed this business. Spurs & Feathers for a long time as most know was just a publication that was received as a newspaper. Not too long ago before the Internet, Spurs & Feathers was how you received a lot of your Gamecock information. I know even I personally always looked forward to reading the publication for that reason. When Aiken Communications took over Spurs & Feathers though we were charged with making sure there was an Internet and social media presence to go along with the newspaper and also our quarterly slick magazines that we were also bringing to the table. Plus, through these different areas we were going to provide daily coverage to go along with our over 25 publications per year. When we officially unveiled SpursandFeathers. com in August of 2013 it marked a first for Spurs & Feathers. At the same time in early August of 2013 when we started a social media effort with @SpursFeathers on Twitter and our Spurs & Feathers page on Facebook it marked the first time Spurs & Feathers had ever utilized these platforms. Now here we are at the beginning of November of 2015 and just in that little over two years that has ballooned from scratch to over 13,000 followers on Twitter and almost 16,500 likes on Facebook. Couple that with our tremendous numbers daily on and on social media and we are in a new time indeed with Spurs & Feathers. This is all mentioned not to promote our product necessarily, but to rather answer the question of what is a normal week like for Spurs & Feathers? With the daily coverage and the constant updating through numerous areas the answer becomes clearer that it’s always hectic, but rewarding. To give an example, we go to print at 4 p.m. every Sunday during football season. It’s a quick turnaround after the game, but we made a concerted effort when we took over the publication to print well over a day before originally had

photo by allen sharpe

been done. Aiken Communications is part of Evening Post Industries, which is based in Charleston. Spurs & Feathers’ offices are in Columbia, so every Sunday when we officially release our pages for print they are sent to Charleston for final printing. Every Monday morning during football season the newspapers are then brought to Columbia where they are mailed. The newspapers are always dated the Wednesday of that particular week and after going to print on Sunday we start the process all over again the following Monday morning just as the last week’s edition is being mailed. This last edition dated Wednesday, Nov. 4, for example we started on Monday, Oct. 26. That date included South Carolina’s annual on-campus women’s basketball media day as well as the annual Junior Gamecock Club Halloween Party at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden, so it kicked off in a fun, but busy way. One day later, on Tuesday, Oct. 27, we had the normal weekly football press conferences before on Wednesday, Oct. 28, we had an early morning exclusive interview with Steve Spurrier and then South Carolina men’s basketball on-campus media day later that day. On Thursday, Oct. 29, we spent most of the day laying out the upcoming newspaper before heading to Florence, South Carolina later that evening for the annual Florence County Gamecock Club fall rally. This is all of course on top of working on the numerous other stories we are trying to finalize for not just that particular edition, but also future editions. In fact, many stories never even make a Spurs & Feathers newspaper or magazine as they are just for daily coverage of Gamecock athletics. As you can imagine it takes a great deal of work to finalize each edition of Spurs & Feathers as in addition to the stories, we have to also lay out the publication after the football game

each and every weekend. To this end, our reporter Kyle Heck always takes the long football road trips so I can focus on making sure we are able to get to print on time. I used to try and travel every now and then during football season, but with everything we have to finish along with the normal day-to-day duties of the publication over the weekend, I ended up maybe getting an hour or two of sleep the whole weekend. Obviously for the Nov. 4 edition, we had numerous stories on the South Carolina-Texas A&M game from Saturday, Oct. 31, before closing things out on Sunday, Nov. 1 for that week’s edition. Every Sunday the columnists are due to turn in their stories by 11 a.m. by the latest and then I go about final layouts and editing and then send to print, put on the website, social media and then email to all Gamecock Club members. Every story in the publication if not already on is also put on the website for ease of reading as well. At the end of the day the fact that there is never a truly normal week is what makes it normal to us here at Spurs & Feathers. It’s a lot of work, but we get to write and talk about the Gamecocks through numerous platforms as you’ve also seen in the past we also occasionally incorporate video and much more. We hope you read the newspaper, our magazines, visit, watch our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook. You maybe do all of the above or value one above the other, but in a world where it’s all about being connected in some way Spurs & Feathers has a platform that will connect you with the Gamecock Club and Gamecock athletics. And at the end of the day for us that is what it’s all about.

Spurs & Feathers • 3

November 11, 2015

Gamecock men’s tennis taking part in Movember

south carolina athletics media relations

For the second-consecutive year, South Carolina men’s tennis is putting down its rackets and picking up its razors to raise funds and awareness for men’s health issues. The Gamecocks, led by head coach Josh Goffi, are changing the face of men’s health by participating in the Movember Challenge, a health initiative that urges men to grow a mustache throughout the month of November to raise awareness and funds for men’s health issues such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health issues. In 2014, South Carolina men’s tennis participated in “Movember,” and with the help of the community, exceeded their goal of $1,000 by raising more than $1,600 for the Movember Foundation. This year, the team is raising the bar, setting a goal of $2,000. The team has a designated donation page on the Movember Foundation website where fans can donate. Twelve years strong, the Movember Foundation is a global charity committed to men by raising awareness and educating men living happier, healthier, longer lives by year-round, and through the month-long creating positive change for men’s health November campaign.

submitted photo

To make a donation through the South Carolina men’s tennis Movember web site, visit

Fans are also encouraged to interact with the team on Twitter @GamecockMTennis using #MovemberSC.

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4 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

photo by jenny dilworth

Orth has career day in loss to Tennessee by kyle Heck Reporter

Orth. The former walk-on completed 20-of-39 passes for 233 yards and a career-high three touchdowns. Junior quarterback Perry Orth led South Orth connected with linebacker-turned-fullback Carolina into yet another hostile environment Jonathan Walton from 10-yards out for the on Saturday, Nov. 7, as the Gamecocks played at Gamecocks’ first touchdown of the day. Interim Tennessee. And once again, Orth almost led the head coach Shawn Elliott said the team just put in Gamecocks to an upset win on someone else’s the new package for Walton this week and Orth home turf. A week after a seven-point loss at knew that it would pay dividends. Texas A&M when the Gamecocks were major “He’s an athlete,” Orth said. “I love that little underdogs, Orth had South Caroilna deep in Ten- formation we put in. It gives us a run-pass option nessee territory as the game wound down with and Jon made a play. He was a high school runthe Gamecocks trailing by just three points. How- ning back and he’s very, very athletic, he’s got ever, while trying to fight for extra yardage inside great hands and he was wide open.” the Vols’ red zone, tight end Jerell Adams had the Orth also connected with junior wide receiver ball knocked out of his hands and Tennessee rePharoh Cooper for a five-yard touchdown pass covered, ending South Carolina’s upset attempt. that tied the game at 24 just before the end of the Tennessee would hang on for the 27-24 victory. third quarter and gave Orth a new career-high in “He made a heck of a play,” Orth said of Tentouchdown passes. nessee’s Malik Foreman, the player who forced While it is now back-to-back tough-luck losses the fumble. “Jerell was just being Jerell there. The for the Gamecocks, Orth said the team is still guy just came up behind him and punched the going to have the same mindset, which is to stay ball out. It’s one of those things that’s very, very positive and keep playing all the way to the end. unfortunate. I feel bad because Jerell is such a “It’s one game at a time,” Orth said. “We can’t good guy and he played his tail off tonight.” look too far in the future. We just have to get After falling down to the Vols ready for (Florida). We put 17-0, it was Adams’ seven-yard together two pretty solid perfortouchdown reception from Orth mances in two of the toughest that completed the comeback places in college football to play and tied the game at 17 in the and we’re really close. We’ll get Perry Orth third quarter. back home to our home crowd, KeenanSuggs The tough loss overshadowed that’ll help a lot, and we’ll get Player of the Week a career performance from ready to roll.”

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Spurs & Feathers • 5

November 11, 2015

South Carolina edged out by Tennessee on the road by kyle heck Reporter

Tennessee would extend its lead with another quick drive on the ensuing possession. Tailback Jalen Hurd started it with a 20-yard run and For the second consecutive week, South Caro- Dobbs found receiver Von Pearson open over lina came up just short on the road. the middle of the field for a 37-yard touchdown The Gamecocks overcame a 17-point deficit in pass that put the Vols on top, 14-0, about halfway the first half against Tennessee and found them- through the first quarter. It took Tennessee six selves with a chance to tie or win the game once plays to go 75-yards in 1:26. again in the waning moments. Aaron Medley made it 17-0 with a 44-yard Junior quarterback Perry Orth had the Gamefield goal five minutes before halftime. The make cocks deep in Tennessee territory down three capped a long 14-play, 44-yard drive that took points with less than a minute remaining in the 6:15 off the clock. game. But senior tight end Jerell Adams fumbled South Carolina would answer back with a field the ball while trying to fight for extra yardage goal of its own and also used a long drive in the inside the Vols’ red zone. Tennessee recovered process. Orth found Pharoh Cooper for a gain of the fumble and were able to run out the clock and 17 yards before picking up 15 yards later in the hang on for the 27-24 victory on Saturday, Nov. 7. drive on a quarterback keeper. The drive would “It’s not the way you want to come here and stall right there, however, and Elliott Fry sallose a ball game, I can tell you that,” South vaged three points with a 43-yard field goal that Carolina interim head coach Shawn Elliott said. trimmed the deficit down to 17-3 with about a “One of those games where you just look back minute left in the first half. Fry’s field goal capped and reflect on the first quarter and you saw some an 11-play, 50-yard drive that took 3:57 off the missed opportunities and let that game start reclock. ally fast for them offensively and really slow for After both teams went three-and-out on their us offensively. We kind of settled in and from the first drives of the second half, the Gamecocks second quarter on, our defense played well (and) got something going on their next possession. we started making plays offensively.” Orth got into a great rhythm and completed four One week after losing 35-28 at Texas A&M, passes on the drive while also picking up 17 on it was another tough loss for the Gamecocks. the ground on a quarterback keeper. However, Elliott is still proud of the way his team After Brandon Wilds picked up a first and goal keeps fighting, no matter the circumstances. at the 10, Orth found Jonathan Walton in the flat Even facing a 17-point deficit, Elliott had no and the junior took it in from 10-yards out to trim doubt that South Carolina (3-6, 1-6 SEC) would the Tennessee lead down to 17-10 with just under make a game of it. 10 minutes to play in the third quarter. Usually “We went into halftime (and) what was it, 17a linebacker, Walton played fullback against the 3?” Elliott said. “Let me tell you one thing, we Vols. didn’t bat an eye. At no point did I think our footThe touchdown capped an 11-play, 80-yard ball team was outmatched.” drive that took 2:52 off the clock. Tennessee (5-4, 3-3 SEC) received the ball to “We just put it in this week,” Walton said of the begin the game and quickly drove down the field new package. “I told them I would try my best to strike first. Quarterback Joshua Dobbs found to get out there and help the team as much as I tailback Alvin Kamara for a gain of 20 yards to could. We’re just trying to find ways to make the get into South Carolina territory to kickstart the team better.” drive. Kamara then had a 23-yard run to pick up On the ensuing Tennessee possession, Kamara a first and goal and two plays later, he finished was hit by South Carolina’s Phillip Dukes and what he started with a four-yard touchdown run fumbled the ball. TJ Holloman recovered it and that put the Vols up 7-0. The run capped an eight- the Gamecocks suddenly had a first and goal at play, 67-yard drive that took 3:03 off the clock. the seven-yard line.

the game with a 27-yard field goal from Medley. The Vols converted two third downs on the 10-play, 61-yard drive, but the Gamecocks were able to hold Tennessee out of the end zone once the Vols got into the red zone. South Carolina had a chance to at least tie the game right before the end as Orth led the Gamecocks into Tennessee territory with less than a minute remaining. However, while fighting for photo by allen sharpe extra yardage, Adams had the ball punched out of his hands and the Vols recovered, ending the They made sure they capitalized on the turnGamecocks’ comeback attempt. over, but it took all four downs. Orth couldn’t It was a tough way to lose, but Elliott was once connect with Adams on two of the first three again proud of how hard his team fought. downs, but on fourth and goal from the seven, “What an effort by a great group of GameOrth threaded the needle to Adams in the end cocks,” Elliott said. “Nobody gave (us a) shot … zone as the Gamecocks tied the game at 17. to come here and pull out the victory. But our However, Tennessee was able to retake the football team did. Our football team believed.” lead on its next possession. The Vols marched Orth finished the game completing 20-of-39 75 yards down the field in 11 plays and Dobbs passes for 233 yards and a career-high three touchdowns while senior tailback Brandon Wilds hooked up with Kamara for an 11-yard touchdown pass, Kamara’s second of the day, and Ten- led the rushing attack with 79 yards on 20 carries. While South Carolina has been on the wrong nessee led, 24-17. As they did all game, the Gamecocks would not side of these close games over the last couple of weeks, Elliott believes that the luck will start to give up. Orth led South Carolina down the field again and on third and 3, the junior found Cooper turn the Gamecocks way. They play their final three regular-season games at Williams-Brice in the end zone for a five-yard touchdown pass that once again tied the game, this time at 24. The Stadium. “The ball is going to bounce our way,” Elliott 9-play, 75-yard drive came just before the end of said. “We’re going to have to make it, but we’re the third quarter and took 3:37 off the clock. going to get it done.” Tennessee reclaimed the lead with 9:14 left in

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6 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

2015-16 South Carolina basketball parking information south carolina athletics media relations

es may apply for vehicles parked overnight in this lot)

The Gamecock Athletics Department wants fans to pay special attention to new parking procedures and plans for the upcoming campaign. Fans are encouraged to plan appropriately in anticipation of congested traffic patterns, and longer lines at parking locations and at Colonial Life Arena. We don’t want our amazing fans to miss a minute of action on the court, so please read below to find out what may work best for your family, and have a secondary plan for parking, in case your first parking option is full. With excitement for both the Gamecock men’s and women’s teams as well as new construction projects near the Colonial Life Arena corridor, below are important tips for fans attending Carolina basketball games this season:

- IMPORTANT! Most parking lots open two hours prior to tip-off, however, the DOT Garage will open at 6 p.m., MondayFriday - Due to pedestrian safety, beginning 30-60 minutes prior to tip-off, the block of Greene Street, bounded by Lincoln and Gadsden Streets, will be closed to all traffic. This block will also be blocked for 20-30 minutes following each game

- Season parking passes for both men’s and women’s basketball are sold out - Fans are encouraged to arrive at least one-hour prior to tip-off in anticipation of traffic congestion and longer lines at parking locations, ticket windows and scanning lines - Fans without season parking passes who arrive less than 45 minutes from tip-off are encouraged to utilize the parking shuttle listed below - GAMECOCK CLUB PARKING, MEN’S & WOMEN’S GAMES: Parking in Lot A, the Discovery Garage and the DOT Garage is restricted to Gamecock Club members with the appropriate hang tag only - IF YOU DON’T HAVE A PARKING PASS: There is very limited parking in Lot B, the Discovery Garage and the Convention Center (when available) lots for $5 - RIDE THE SHUTTLE! Free parking is available in the Pendleton Street Garage and a shuttle will run beginning two hours prior to tip-off and will run for one hour following the conclusion of the game. The roundtrip shuttle ride costs $3 . The shuttle is free to students with a Carolina Card. - CITY GARAGE PARKING AVAILABLE! City garage parking located near Pendleton, Park and Lincoln Streets is available for $5 per vehicle for both men’s and women’s games. Additional garage parking may be found two blocks North of Gervais Street in the Lincoln Street Garage (corner of Lincoln and Washington Streets) at $3 per game after 5 p.m. ET (additional charg-

- REMINDER! Parking lots C and D near the Darla Moore School of Business and the Carolina Coliseum are being converted into student housing and are NO longer available for parking - BE AWARE! Due to the construction, various streets in the surrounding area may be closed from time-to-time - OPTIONS: There is metered parking located both on campus and along city streets that can be utilized for Gamecock basketball games. Patrons should check meter information for hours of use - All parking lots and garages are handicap parking compliant - DOORS OPEN: Doors open at the arena for non-conference games one hour prior to tip-off and for conference games one and a half hours prior to tip-off. Sometimes, gates may open early for certain games. Be sure to visit for the most updated information for each game

Season ticket prices for the upcoming season of Gamecock men’s basketball remain unchanged, with full season packages starting at $90. Like last season, fans can purchase lower level season tickets for $260 (Gamecock Club membership required for sections 104-106, 113-115), the Coke Family Sections are available for $600 (four tickets) and upper level tickets are available for $200 (no Gamecock Club membership required). End zone seating in the upper level is priced at four seats for $360. University Faculty/Staff members receive a 20% discount on lower level and upper level ticket prices. The Gamecocks Pass, a mobile subscription season ticket, is also available for $50. After selling over 10,000 season tickets for women’s basketball this season, season tickets are sold out. Single-game tickets for all games except the Feb. 8 contest against preseason No. 1 UConn are on sale now at $8 for adults and $4 for youth (17 and under).

Spurs & Feathers • 7

November 11, 2015

South Carolina Gamecocks

2016 Baseball Schedule Date

Opponent / Event


Time / Result

02/19/16 vs. Albany Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 02/20/16 vs. Albany Columbia, S.C. 2:00 p.m. ET 02/21/16 vs. Albany Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 02/23/16 vs. Appalachian State Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 02/24/16 vs. Winthrop Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 02/26/16 vs. Penn State Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 02/27/16 vs. Penn State Columbia, S.C. 2:00 p.m. ET 02/28/16 vs. Penn State Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 03/01/16 at The Citadel Charleston, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/04/16 vs. Clemson Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/05/16 vs. Clemson Greenville, S.C. (Fluor Field) TBA 03/06/16 at Clemson Clemson, S.C. TBA 03/08/16 vs. Wofford Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/09/16 vs. Furman Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/11/16 vs. Charleston Southern Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/12/16 vs. Charleston Southern Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 03/13/16 vs. Charleston Southern Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 03/15/16 at USC Upstate Greenville, S.C. (Fluor Field) 7:00 p.m. ET 03/16/16 vs. Davidson Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/18/16 vs. Arkansas* Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/19/16 vs. Arkansas* Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 03/20/16 vs. Arkansas* Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 03/24/16 at Ole Miss* Oxford, Miss. TBA 03/25/16 at Ole Miss* Oxford, Miss. TBA 03/26/16 at Ole Miss* Oxford, Miss. TBA 03/29/16 vs. College of Charleston Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 03/31/16 at Vanderbilt* Nashville, Tenn. TBA 04/01/16 at Vanderbilt* Nashville, Tenn. 7:30 p.m. ET 04/02/16 at Vanderbilt* Nashville, Tenn. 3:00 p.m. ET 04/05/16 vs. Coastal Carolina Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 04/08/16 vs. Tennessee* Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 04/09/16 vs. Tennessee* Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 04/10/16 vs. Tennessee* Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 04/12/16 vs. North Carolina Charlotte, N.C. (BB&T Ballpark) 7:00 p.m. ET 04/15/16 at Georgia* Athens, Ga. 7:00 p.m. ET 04/16/16 at Georgia* Athens, Ga. 2:00 p.m. ET 04/17/16 at Georgia* Athens, Ga. 1:00 p.m. ET 04/20/16 at Furman Greenville, S.C. (Fluor Field) 7:00 p.m. ET 04/22/16 vs. Missouri* Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 04/23/16 vs. Missouri* Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 04/24/16 vs. Missouri* Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 04/29/16 vs. Florida* Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 04/30/16 vs. Florida* Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 05/01/16 vs. Florida* Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 05/04/16 vs. USC Upstate Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 05/06/16 at Kentucky* Lexington, Ky. TBA 05/07/16 at Kentucky* Lexington, Ky. TBA 05/08/16 at Kentucky* Lexington, Ky. TBA 05/10/16 vs. Presbyterian Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 05/13/16 vs. Texas A&M* Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 05/14/16 vs. Texas A&M* Columbia, S.C. 4:00 p.m. ET 05/15/16 vs. Texas A&M* Columbia, S.C. 1:30 p.m. ET 05/17/16 vs. The Citadel Columbia, S.C. 7:00 p.m. ET 05/19/16 at Alabama* Tuscaloosa, Ala. TBA 05/20/16 at Alabama* Tuscaloosa, Ala. TBA 05/21/16 at Alabama* Tuscaloosa, Ala. TBA 05/24/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA 05/25/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA 05/26/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA 05/27/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA 05/28/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA 05/29/16 SEC Tournament Hoover, Ala. TBA

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photo by jenny dilworth

06/03/16 06/04/16 06/05/16 06/06/16 06/10/16 06/11/16 06/12/16 06/13/16 06/18/15 06/19/16 06/20/16 06/21/16 06/22/16 06/23/16 06/24/16 06/25/16 06/26/16 06/27/16 06/28/16

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8 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

South Carolina Gamecocks

Recruiting Round-up

Despite not having a head coach in place for next season, USC continues to move forward with recruiting for the 2016 class. This past Wednesday night the Gamecocks gained a commitment from DE Griffin Gentry (6-2 260) of Homewood, AL. He’s the second commitment for the Gamecocks since Steve Spurrier announced his resignation last month. Gentry had over a dozen offers and had been committed to Troy. After USC offered late last month, he immediately moved the Gamecocks to the top of his list along with Troy and Memphis. That momenPhil Kornblut tum USC had built Contributing with him continued Writer over the last couple of weeks until he called recruiter Kirk Botkin Wednesday night with his commitment. “I talked it over with my coach and my family and playing in the SEC has been a long time dream of mine,” Gentry said. “I’ve always liked South Carolina. I’ve always wanted to play for them so when the opportunity came I wanted to go ahead and take it.” Gentry understands that Botkin and the rest of the defensive staff may not be there come December and the new coaching staff will have to review him all over again, but that’s a risk he’s willing to take right now. “I did think about what’s going to happen with Coach Botkin and all that but I feel confident that whoever we get will be a good fit.” Gentry has over 80 tackles so far this season. As a junior he had 106 tackles and 7 sacks. He’s confident he has what it takes to make it in the SEC. “I think I will be a really good fit at South Carolina in their 4-3 defense,” he said. “I think that’s one of my strengths being one on one with the tackle or guard. And I can play any position.” Gentry will take an unofficial visit to USC for the Florida game and will schedule his official visit with the Gamecocks for later on. Gentry gives the Gamecocks 17 commitments for the 2016 class. DB Marlon Character of Atlanta last Monday switched his commitment from USC to Auburn. Character had been committed to the Gamecocks since late

By Phil Kornblut

July over Auburn, Ohio State, Virginia Tech and Georgia. Auburn never relented in its pursuit of Character and with the future of USC’s defensive coaching staff in doubt, he felt it just made since to make the f lip. “After careful reconsideration and talking it over with my family, I’ve decided to forgo my commitment to (South Carolina) and take my talent as well as further my education at Auburn University,” Character posted on Twitter. Character is the third decommitment for USC from the 2016 class to this point joining LB PJ Blue and WR Kyle Davis. WR Dre Massey of Holmes JC, MS made an official visit to Cincinnati over the weekend and has set other officials with USC November 14th, Oklahoma November 21st and Florida November 28th. He’s been favoring the Gamecocks since getting an offer from them last month. “I was expecting it,” Massey said. “I’m excited about it. They are going to try and bring me back home.” With the offer, Massey has moved the Gamecocks to the top of his list though he’s not going to be ready to close in on a decision until after his visits. “I’m open to everyone for now,” Massey said. “I plan to drop my top five around Thanksgiving.” This season Massey has 21 catches for 548 yards (26.1 average) and 6 touchdowns and has rushed for 452 yards and 3 touchdowns. Florida offered him last week. USC is looking to add more talent to its secondary and the Gamecocks are involved with Marquez Callaway (6-2 175), a cornerback from Warner Robins, Ga. USC recruiter Kirk Botkin has been in touch with Callaway as recently as last week and he has been able to develop a good relationship with him at this point. “He was asking me how I’ve been and how my family is and all that,” Callaway said. “He tells me that they would love to have me. When I went up to the (Kentucky) game earlier in the season, I talked to Coach Botkin and I talked to the defensive back coach and they were telling me how much they like me and how much of an impact I would be.” Callaway has not set any official visits but he plans to take one to Alabama for the LSU game. He is also planning a return trip to USC with his family. “I like them,” Callaway said of the Gamecocks. “They tell me that I’ll

get a lot of playing time early on and that’s always a plus.” Callaway also visited USC last summer while in Columbia to visit his brother at Fort Jackson. He also has offers from Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Tennessee, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Auburn, Mississippi State and others. He does not have any favorites at this point. He’s also been to Georgia and to Tennessee for games. Callaway will play in January in the US Army All American Game. DB Dreshun Miller of Marietta, GA also is planning an unofficial visit to USC for the Florida game. He talked with USC recruiter GA Mangus and was told they’ve looked at his film and they do like it. Miller said he just took his ACT and a good score will boost his recruiting interest. He has offers from Coastal Carolina and Valdosta State. He’s also hearing from Illinois, Michigan and Alabama. He went to Alabama for the Ole Miss game. LB Plevon Pryor of Baltimore made an unofficial visit to USC for the Vanderbilt game. “I went on a tour of campus and I loved it,” Pryor said. “I also went to the football game and met some great players for South Carolina. They had a good win against Vanderbilt. I would love to be a member of South Carolina.” Pryor said the Gamecocks are interested in him but have not offered. He does plan to take an official visit with the Gamecocks after the season. USC target WR Isaiah Graham of Bastrop, LA committed Friday to TCU while another player USC recruited, DE Tony Clayton of Vienna, GA committed to Florida. Graham’s teammate, DE Travez Moore, committed to LSU Monday over USC and TCU. USC OL target Ashton Julious of Lackawanna JC, PA and Florence committed to Oklahoma after taking an official visit there. USC commitment DB JJ Givens of Mechanicsville, VA was offered last week by Wisconsin and plans to take an official visit there. USC target OL John Simpson of Fort Dorchester was at NC State Saturday. He plans to be at Clemson this Saturday. Basketball News: USC is on the board in basketball recruiting for the 2016 class after gaining

a commitment last Monday night from 6-10 post Sedee Keita, a native of Philadelphia who attends 22 Feet Academy in Greenville. Keita, whose family hails from Africa, took visits to USC, Temple, Providence and Penn State. USC head coach Frank Martin and his staff worked Keita very hard from when he was at 22 Feet as well as Putnam Science Academy in Connecticut. Gamecock assistant coach Perry Clark was on hand for Keita’s game last Sunday. “He was going to pick the school he felt most comfortable with,” said 22 Feet coach Matt Schmidt. “He liked the fact that Frank teaches and utilizes big guys and they really don’t have a big guy like Sedee with a face up game. He sees himself as kind of a different post player for them and that gives him a chance to earn some minutes.” Keita agreed with his coach’s assessment and felt playing at USC and for Martin would be best for him in the long run. “It does feel good being a Gamecock and relieving all this stress,” Keita said. “Coach Martin has a lot posts that he’s coached and the program is on the up and coming. It’s a fast paced offense and that’s a style I could play in. It’s a great fit. I feel like it lets me run up and down and that’s what I like to do.” Schmidt added that Keita should be in a position to help out the Gamecocks early on the defensive end but it will take some time for his offensive game, at the SEC level, to mature. “His size and length are unbelievable,” he said. “Defensively he’s such an agile big man. He can cover the perimeter guys. He’s so light on his feet. Defensively he has a lot of tools. All he cares about is that the team wins. He’s not there for himself. He has the potential to be a very good face up post scorer and when he gets in the paint he can have a really good jump shot. He has a ways to go with his offensive game just being comfortable. He does see cuts and he sees the weak side. He’s very good kicking out of the post and finding the open guys.” With Keita in the bag, Martin turns his attention to his targets for the early signing period. 6-1 Seventh Woods of Hammond will announce on November 11th for USC, North Carolina or Georgetown. And 6-10 Dewan Huell of Miami is considering USC, Miami and Florida State. He has not set an announcement date.

Spurs & Feathers • 9

November 11, 2015

South Carolina Gamecocks


football Schedule


SEC East


6-1 8-1

5-0 2-1 257 131 W2

09/19/ Georgia # ........................... Athens, Ga............................. L, 52-20


4-3 6-3

5-1 1-1 262 166 W1


3-3 5-4

3-2 1-2 316 218 W2

09/26/15...........vs. UCF...................................... Columbia, S.C......................W, 31-14


2-5 4-5

3-3 1-2 197 260 L4


1-4 3-6

2-2 1-4 133 157 L2


1-5 4-5

3-2 1-3 132 131 L4

South Carolina

1-6 3-6

2-1 0-6 195 246 L2

SEC West

09/03/15...........vs. North Carolina ............... Charlotte, N.C......................W, 17-13 09/12/15...........vs. Kentucky # ....................... Columbia, S.C....................... L, 26-22

10/03/ Missouri #........................... Columbia, Mo....................... L, 24-10 10/10/15...........vs. LSU #................................... Baton Rouge, La.................. L, 45-24 10/17/15...........vs. Vanderbilt #...................... Columbia, S.C......................W, 19-10










4-1 7-1

6-0 2-1 288 188 L1

11/07/ Tennessee #....................... Knoxville, Tenn..................... L, 27-24

Ole Miss

4-2 7-3

5-1 2-2 407 230 L1


5-1 8-1

5-1 2-0 298 147 W6

11/14/15...........vs. Florida #............................. Columbia, S.C........................ 12 p.m.

Texas A&M

3-3 6-3

4-2 0-1 267 223 L1

10/31/ Texas A&M #...................... College Station, Texas....... L, 35-28

11/21/15...........vs. The Citadel....................... Columbia, S.C...............................TBA 11/28/15...........vs. Clemson............................ Columbia, S.C...............................TBA

Mississippi State

3-2 7-2

4-1 3-1 312 155 W4


3-2 5-4

3-2 2-1 313 265 W3


2-4 5-4

2-2 2-2 244 245 W1

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10 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

Previewing the Florida football team by kyle heck Reporter

also a legitimate threat to pick up yards on the ground. That will be nothing new for the Gamecocks as playing Harris will mark Entering the year with a lot of unknowns, the third straight opponent they’ve played including a new coach in Jim McElwain, that will be starting a dual-threat quarterFlorida was picked by the media to finish back. fifth in the SEC east. Harris initially lost the starting quarterMore than two-thirds of the way through back job to Will Grier to start the year, but the season, the Gators have put those preis now the unquestioned starter after Grier season rankings to shame. was suspended for a year for testing posiThe Gators will take their much-improved tive for PED’s earlier in October. SEC East title-winning team into Columbia Over the past few years, the Gators have to face the Gamecocks on Nov. 14 in both also struggled to find a threat on the outteam’s SEC finale. side at wide receiver, but that has certainly Florida has used a stingy defense and a changed this season. Freshman Antonio much-improved offense to get itself back Callaway was leading the team with 418 reinto the national discussion. ceiving yards on just 19 receptions entering After struggling on offense the past cou- the contest against the Commodores. That ple of years, the Gators are averaging over comes out to 22 yards per reception, which 30 points per game and have revitalized the ranks seventh in the country. running game, thanks to tailback Kelvin Callaway is also a threat as a punt reTaylor. The junior already had 10 rushturner, already having a 72-yard return photo by allen sharpe ing touchdowns entering the game against touchdown to his credit this season. Vanderbilt. On defense, Florida is as strong as it Sophomore quarterback Treon Harris is always is. The Gators boast a disruptive defensive line that ranks near the top of the

conference in sacks and tackles for loss. Jon Bullard and Alex McCallister are the leaders of that unit and had 8.5 sacks between them entering the Vanderbilt game. The other two starters, Bryan Cox Jr. and Caleb Brantley, are also very talented and have had great seasons so far. If you can hold off the Florida defensive linemen long enough, you still have to deal with All-American defensive back Vernon Hargreaves III. The junior had tallied four interceptions going into the game against the Commodores and racked up 152 yards of interception return yardage. Senior linebacker Antonio Morrison is the leader of the defense and is the Gators’ leading tackler. South Carolina has gotten the better of the Gators in recent years, having won four out of the last five meetings and two straight at Williams-Brice Stadium. The Gamecocks are on a two-game winning streak overall against the Gators, including an exciting overtime victory in Gainesville last year.

The view from the Tennessee locker room by brian hand Executive Editor

Tennessee entered the halftime break feeling as if they had things in control. And up to the point in time they did. The second half was a completely different story though as the Gamecocks (3-6, 1-6 SEC) outplayed the Volunteers (5-4, 3-3 SEC). But in the end South Carolina’s efforts in the second half would fall short as the Volunteers would be able to narrowly escape with a 27-24 win. “Well, what can I say? We found a way to win,” Tennessee head coach Butch Jones said after the Volunteer win. “This is a weekto-week league. That’s why it’s the toughest conference in all of college football. I’m proud of our players. We had a number of individuals step up and make critical plays at critical moments of the game.” Jones knows it was not exactly how they envisioned things coming out of the locker room into the second half, but once again he knows for them all that matters is the win. “They started a lot of movement up front, bringing the nickel a lot (in the second half),” Jones said. “And just being able to block movement, we were limited in some of the quarterback run packages. But I’m never going to apologize for winning. This is a hard-fought game. We’re playing a good football team and I give South Carolina all the credit in the world.” Tennessee finished with 408 yards of total offense in the game and in turn allowed 385 yards of offense to the Gamecocks, who led time of possession in the game at 32:21-27:39. Despite the Gamecocks outscoring Tennessee, 21-10, in the second half, Volunteer star defensive back Cameron Sutton knows like his head coach that the win could not have happened without through throughout the course of the night, just learning how to belief among the team that they would hold on and make a play. handle that; making corrections at that point and then just going “It’s amazing,” Sutton said. “All the adversity that we went out there executing and making plays. I think the biggest thing is

photo by jenny dilworth

not getting down on ourselves and we know that there are things that will go against us throughout the course of the game. That’s with any team. But it’s how we handle those [adverse] moments.”

Spurs & Feathers • 11

November 11, 2015

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12 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

The measure of any team is whether or not they are improving

had eye-popping statistics. But make no mistake, this Gamecock squad has some talented players who are making progress and show flashes of becoming difference makers. I think the last two games have proven that the coaches put the players in a position to win, and I think the players trusted what they were trying to accomplish. What I’m saying here is, the new head coach, Shawn Elliott, or whomever, will photo by jenny dilworth not be starting from scratch building the talent base. Even Coach admitted, “We leaving the program worse than he found it. missed on a few,” earlier in the season, and unfortunately, some of those misses were at The answer to that is an unequivocal “NO.” There are positions on both sides of crucial positions, but there is a solid base to jumpstart the new regime. the ball that are thin from a talent standI think we need to remind ourselves that point, but the real issue is the lack of “difthis bunch of Gamecocks are giving it evference makers.” Ask yourself truthfully, erything they’ve got. I really haven’t seen beyond Pharoh Cooper, who would you anyone giving in or giving up, and neither consider a difference maker? should we with our support. There are a number of newcomers who It’s always a great time to be a Gamewere considered potential candidates, and cock! while several have played well, none have


When the Gamecocks beat No. 1-ranked winning is a victory in itself. Alabama in 2010, in my mind, it forever The measure of any team, especially one ended the “South Carolina doesn’t belong, that is losing, is whether or not they imcan’t win in the Southeastern Conference” proving, and the Gamecocks have played argument. their best football of the season in the last Since that game, in my eternally optimis- two games. The problem is, how can you tic heart, I have believed the Cocks had a improve enough to face the next chalchance in every game against every oplenge – Florida, unbeaten Eastern Division ponent in the league, no matter the odds. Champions – and expect to win? The same That’s why I am disappointed way Vanderbilt approached in myself for not giving the the Gators, who needed a lastCocks much of a chance second field goal to subdue the against Tennessee. Dores, 9-7 – prepare and come For the second week in a row, in with an “on any given day Interim Head Coach Shawn attitude,” Elliott and his staff had a solid A friend, who favors a “yes, game plan that an enthusiastic, but what have you done for rejuvenated squad executed to me lately” philosophy, called the best of their ability. And to say how sorry he was about for the second week in a row the way things ended for a critical mistake ended hopes Coach Spurrier, and while he of an upset. A loss is a loss, Glenn Snyder was thrilled with all the things but for this year’s team being Inside he had done for Carolina, he possibly one play away from Look was concerned that Coach was

Spurs & Feathers • 13

November 11, 2015

Gamecocks put on a show for a good cause by kyle heck Reporter

Gamecocks, the Lexington County Blowfish and the Lexington County Recreation & Aging Commission, who operate Lexington Fans who came out to Lexington County County Baseball Stadium. Baseball Stadium for a good cause on Thurs“It was a good night,” South Carolina baseday, Nov. 5, also were treated to a great finish. ball coach Chad Holbrook said. “One, we got The South Carolina baseball team schedto come out here and enjoy ourselves a little uled game four of their annual Garnet & bit and again we get to contribute to the comBlack World Series in Lexington County munity, which is the most important reason with all proceeds from the event going tothat we’re here. All in all, it was a good night ward the Salvation Army’s efforts to help and special night for our players.” provide for people affected by the devastating While also helping out people who need it floods that tore through the midlands around in the midlands, it was also special for Blowa month ago. fish owner Bill Shanahan to see his team and The scrimmage was originally scheduled the Gamecocks work together once again. for seven innings, but with both squads score- “A wonderful opportunity for Lexington less after seven, the Gamecocks agreed to County to showcase their new baseball staplay one more inning. In the dium,” Shanahan said. “It’s bottom of the eighth inning, so cool to see the roster of the sophomore Madison Stokes Gamecocks and see nine of of the Black team launched a the Gamecocks that played game-winning home run to for the Blowfish.” right field to give his team the In fact, the hero of Thursvictory. day’s scrimmage, Stokes, All Gamecock baseball While that was a nice endplayed for the Blowfish this coverage sponsored by ing, the main focus was on past summer. DiPrato’s the fundraising efforts by the “Madison works very

photo by brian hand

The Gamecocks as a team on the field after the game at Lexington County Baseball Stadium. hard,” Holbrook said. “He’s a great kid and it’s good to see some of his work being rewarded the last couple weeks. He’s been a very consistent performer the last six to eight scrimmages.” Despite there not being a lot of notice for the scrimmage, there was a good crowd on hand watching the Gamecocks and helping raise money, which was exciting for Holbrook to see. In total, there were around 1,000 people in attendance and that raised right around

$4,300 for the Salvation Army’s efforts. “It was great,” Holbrook said. “You get over 1,000 people when you put this thing together in two weeks (that’s good). I was thinking we would probably get 1,000 or so and I guess that’s kind of about what it was. Something that’s put together that quick in November, non-baseball season, weather has been kind of gloomy, I thought it was great. I thought our players enjoyed it, the music was great. It was first-class. They welcomed us out here and they did a great job of hosting us.”

even in a year like this where the midlands has been through so much. “That’s one of the reasons that was a major goal for us was to reward the people in the Columbia area, the University community for their incredible support,” Berson said. “Gamecock fans (support), it’s no secret. It’s legendary. They give their great support to us and all of our teams and I want to thank each and every one of the students, the faculty, the Columbia area people and all of the Gamecock Club people. We had a great crowd again tonight. That helps power us.” South Carolina’s final three wins to close out the season undefeated at home were incredibly impressive in that they allowed just one goal against three of the top teams in the country. South Carolina first shut out then the nation’s No. 1 scoring team in FIU, 2-0, on Tuesday, Oct. 27, before besting then No. 13 Old Dominion, 3-1, on Halloween evening. The 1-0 win over a No. 11 Coastal Carolina team that had once been in the top-5 in the nation this year put the exclamation mark on a special home campaign that

Berson believes firmly has South Carolina in the NCAA Tournament field that will be unveiled on Monday, Nov. 16. “There’s no question I think we’ll be in the NCAA Tournament,” Berson said. “I think we have a outside shot potentially being seeded pretty high.” The NCAA Tournament is not what is on the minds of the Gamecocks right now though as they are just focused on the next step that starts on Wednesday, Nov. 11, with the Conference USA Men’s Soccer Championship that will be held in Charlotte. The third-seeded Gamecocks will face off against sixth-seeded New Mexico at 4:30 p.m. in the quarterfinals on Nov. 11. South Carolina bested then seventh-ranked New Mexico, 2-1, in overtime on Friday, Sept. 25, in their 2015 regular-season meeting. The victory was one of two top-10 wins at home on the week for the Gamecocks, who also took down then No. 8 Elon, 3-1, on Tuesday, Sept. 22. “Our focus now is on the Conference USA (Tournament) Championship,” Berson said. “That’s our next goal.”

South Carolina men’s soccer finishes season undefeated at home by brian hand Executive Editor

It’s incredibly difficult in men’s college soccer - or really any sport for that matter - to finish undefeated during the regularseason at home. Nevertheless, with what is considered one of the top-10 toughest schedules in all of men’s college soccer the nationally-ranked South Carolina men’s soccer team closed out the 2015 season at home with an 8-0-1 record at Stone Stadium after shutting out No. 11 Coastal Carolina, 1-0, on Saturday, Nov. 7. The spotless record at home marked the first time since 1993 that South Carolina had gone undefeated at home. “It’s huge,” South Carolina men’s soccer head coach Mark Berson said of the undefeated home finish. “It’s been 22 years (1993). We play a really tough schedule every year, so it’s no small feat to finish the season undefeated (at home). I’m really proud of the guys. They were really excited. Some of them were saying, ‘we weren’t born

photo by brian hand

South Carolina on field after ending their 2015 regular-season undefeated at home.

in 1993.’ It’s a great, great feeling. It’s a great accomplishment for this group and I’m really proud of them.” Finishing the 2015 season undefeated at “The Graveyard” as Stone Stadium is affectionately known was one of the goals that South Carolina had set for itself this year. Berson and the Gamecocks set that goal obviously because they knew it would put them in a great position for the NCAA Tournament and more, but also because they wanted to honor those who do so much for them since the program consistently finishes among the tops in the country in attendance

14 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

photo by allen sharpe

Weathers honored for traveling far and wide to see Gamecocks by kyle heck Reporter

interested in doing that and I said, ‘Patrick, are you serious?’” Weathers recalled. “And he said, ‘well of course, you’ve been doing all Ever since 1977, Don Weathers has been these football trips for years and you deserve organizing motor coach and bus trips to away to be it.’ So I said, ‘well I look forward to doSouth Carolina football games. At one point, ing it then, that would be great.’” sometimes as many as six buses full of fans Weathers grew up in Batesburg-Leesville would travel to support the Gamecocks. and he and his family started watching South Nearly four decades after that started, Carolina football games when he was in high Weathers was honored himself for his loyschool. He wasn’t able to make a lot of games alty and support of South Carolina athletics then, but he just listened to them on the radio. when he was the Legendary Fan of the Game Weathers enrolled at South Carolina in 1957 before the Gamecocks played Vanderbilt at and was able to start watching the GameWilliams-Brice Stadium. cocks more often. Weathers couldn’t quite Weathers had no idea the honor was comput his finger on why it was so fun to watch ing, but there was no question about whether Gamecock football, but just said that there he would participate when Gamecock Club was something special about it. executive director Patrick McFarland came to “I guess just being young and watching the him with the idea. excitement of college football and seeing how “Patrick McFarland asked me if I would be they played and watching them through the

years,” Weathers said. One of the most memorable memories for Weathers came when he wasn’t watching the Gamecocks play. It came when he and his wife got married on a rather important day. “Our wedding date was October 22, 1959, which is the last Big Thursday. So people were kind of kidding me about that. But it was just happened to be the day that suited us both for the wedding so that was the day we picked.” This year is another special one for Weathers because it is the last where he will be organizing and going on the motor coach trips. He’s been cutting back over the last few years and decided that it was finally time to retire after the Gamecocks travel up to Tennessee to take on the Vols on November 7. Over nearly 40 years, Weathers has been all over the country watching the Gamecocks.

One thing that makes his trips unique is the fact that they usually take a few extra days to sightsee near where the game will be played. “We enjoy going to new places and seeing a lot of new experiences,” Weathers said. “Several people have told me that they were happy to go because if it hadn’t been for the motor coach trip and the group going, they probably wouldn’t had been able to go themselves on their own. It’s really beneficial to a lot of fans I think. It’s been pretty exciting going to new places and seeing new parts of the country.” Weathers has another experience to add to his memories with the Legendary Fan honor. It was something that he enjoyed immensely with his whole family. “My family was with me, my two daughters and their family came and we had about 10 to 12 family members there and everyone enjoyed it,” Weathers said. “It was very exciting.”

Spurs & Feathers • 15

November 11, 2015

Gamecock Radio/Television Information 2015-16 RADIO AFFILIATES*

The Gamecock Sports Network from IMG College counts 24 affiliate stations for the 201516 football season. For Sirius/XM subscribers, follow the @GamecockRadio Twitter page for weekly updates on channel information for Gamecock broadcasts. The weekly Carolina Calls show will air from 7-8 p.m. on the flagship station of the Gamecocks, WNKT-FM (107.5 FM), and over the Internet at The show takes place each week at Wild Wing Café, located at 729 Lady Street in the Vista. Wild Wing Café, which is South Carolina’s home for the best wings south of Buffalo, has 12 locations in the Palmetto State. Visit for more information.


Inside the Roost South Carolina Athletics Director Ray Tanner and Derek Scott from the Gamecock Sports Network from IMG College host an hour long radio show every Monday night at 7 p.m. from Hilton Columbia Center in the Vista. The show is broadcast on 107.5 FM and features discussions on current issues with Ray Tanner and interviews with coaches and athletics department staff. South Carolina-Florida Television The South Carolina-Florida game will be on ESPN. Please check local listings.

Call Letters



Abbeville WZLA-FM 92.9 johnston/Aiken WKSX-FM 92.7 Allendale WDOG-FM 93.5 Camden WPUB-FM 102.7 Camden WCAM-AM 1590 Charleston WWIK-FM 98.9 Chesterfield WVSZ-FM 107.3 Columbia WNKT-FM 107.5 Florence WFRK-FM 93.5 Florence WHYM-AM 1260 Gaffney WZZQ-FM 104.3 Gaffney WZZQ-AM 1500 Greenville WROO-FM 104.9 Hilton Head WVGB-FM 94.5 Hilton Head WVGB-AM 1490 Lake City WHYM-AM 1260 Myrtle Beach WSYN-FM 103.1 Newberry WKDK-AM 1240 Rock Hill WRHM-FM 107.1 Rock Hill WVSZ-FM 107.3 Seneca WSNW-AM 1150 Seneca WSNW-FM 94.1


Sumter WIBZ-FM 95.5 Union WBCU-AM 1460 * Men’s basketball and baseball affiliates will be updated at a later time.



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16 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

South Carolina Gamecocks # Name Pos. 1 Rico McWilliams CB 1 Deebo Samuel WR 3 Chris Lammons CB 3 D.J. Neal WR 4 Bryson Allen-Williams LB 4 Jalen Christian WR 5 Darius English DE 5 Terry Googer WR 6 Chris Moody FS 6 Connor Mitch QB 7 Al Harris Jr. CB 7 Shon Carson TB 8 Shamier Jeffery WR 8 Marquavius Lewis DE 9 Carlton Heard WR 9 Sherrod Pittman LB 10 Skai Moore LB 10 Perry Orth QB 11 T.J. Holloman LB 11 Pharoh Cooper WR 12 Ernest Hawkins LB 12 Michael Scarnecchia QB 13 Sean Kelly P 13 Jalen Henry LB 14 Shaq Davidson WR 14 Ali Groves FS 15 Matrick Belton WR 15 Antoine Wilder SS 16 Rashad Fenton CB 16 Gage Pucci QB 17 Chaz Elder SS 18 Cedrick Cooper DE 18 Danny Gordon QB 19 Landon Ard PK 19 Lorenzo Nunez QB 20 Joseph Charlton K/P 20 T.J. Gurley SPR 21 Isaiah Johnson FS 22 Brandon Wilds TB 23 Christian Owens WR 23 Larenz Bryant LB 24 D.J. Smith FS 25 Darin Smalls CB 25 A.J. Turner TB 26 Jasper Sasser SPR 27 Toure Boyd FS 28 Jonathan Walton LB 29 Elliott Fry PK 30 Daniel Fennell LB 30 Darius Paulk TB 32 Rod Talley TB 33 David Williams TB 34 Mon Denson TB 34 Scott Grant SS

Hgt. 5-11 6-0 5-10 6-3 6-1 5-9 6-6 6-4 6-1 6-3 5-11 5-8 6-1 6-3 6-0 6-0 6-2 6-1 6-2 5-11 6-1 6-4 5-10 5-10 5-11 5-10 6-4 5-10 5-10 6-0 6-2 6-2 6-0 5-9 6-3 6-5 5-10 6-0 6-2 6-5 6-0 5-11 5-11 5-10 6-0 5-11 6-0 6-0 6-3 5-8 5-10 6-1 5-10 5-10

Wgt. 186 202 183 193 233 177 225 226 215 211 163 206 189 264 182 225 218 203 231 207 224 210 189 207 175 183 209 185 180 195 209 248 203 182 210 180 199 206 220 204 220 195 190 185 207 180 235 164 220 198 201 222 222 178


Football Roster

Hometown/High School/Last College Hampton, Ga./Lovejoy Inman, S.C./Chapman Lauderhill, Fla./Plantation Stone Mountain, Ga./Stephenson Ellenwood, Ga./Ceder Grove Damascus, Md./Damascus Powder Springs, Ga./McEachern Atlanta, Ga./Woodward Academy McDonough, Ga./Henry County Raleigh, N.C./Wakefield Fort Lauderdale, Fla./St. Thomas Aquinas Scranton, S.C./Lake City St. Matthews, S.C./Calhoun County Greenwood, S.C./Greenwood/Hutchinson Athens, Ga./Clarke Central/Gardner-Webb Jacksonville, Fla./First Coast Cooper City, Fla./University Ponte Vedra, Fla/Florida State College Stone Mountain, Ga./St. Pius X Havelock, NC./Havelock Baltimore, Md./Dunbar/Hartnell College Fleming Island, Fla./Fleming Island Oakland, Fla./West Orange/FAU/Tallahassee JC Foley, Ala./Foley Gaffney, S.C./Gaffney Stone Mountain, Ga./Stephenson Columbia, S.C./Keenan/Hampton Riverdale, Ga./Hapeville Charter Miami, Fla./Miami Carol City Glendora, Calif./Rancho Cucamonga Union City, Ga./Banneker Lithonia, Ga./Lithonia Worthington, Ohio/Worthington/Miami (Ohio) Rock Hill, S.C./South Pointe Kennesaw, Ga./Harrison Columbia, S.C./A.C. Flora Cairo, Ga./Cairo Cary, N.C./Panther Creek/Kansas Blythewood, S.C./Blythewood Griffin, Ga./Griffin Charlotte, NC./Vance Marietta, Ga./Walton Summerville, S.C./Summerville Clifton, Va./Centreville Jacksonville, Fla./Wolfson Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./Chaffey College Daphne, Ala./Bayside Academy Frisco, Texas/Prince of Peace Christian Loganville, Ga./Grayson Columbia, S.C./North Greenville Laurens, S.C./Laurens/Gardner-Webb Philadelphia, Pa./Imhotep Charter LaGrange, Ga./LaGrange Laurens, S.C./Laurens

Coaches Shawn Elliott - Interim Head Coach Deke Adams - Defensive Line Kirk Botkin - Linebackers Jon Hoke - Co-Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Backs G.A. Mangus - Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks/Tight Ends Joe Robinson - Special Teams Coordinator Everette Sands - Running Backs Steve Spurrier Jr. - Co-Offensive Coordinator/Wide Receivers/Recruiting Coordinator Lorenzo Ward - Co-Defensive Coordinator Travelle Wharton - Offensive Line Jamie Speronis - Associate AD/Football Operations Joey Blake - Director of Football Nutrition Joe Connolly - Director-Football Strength & Conditioning Robbie Liles - Director - Recruiting Operations Patrick Shine - Administrative Coordinator - Recruiting Scott Spurrier - Quality Control Coordinator (Offense) Grady Brown - Quality Control Coordinator (Defense) Shaq Wilson - Quality Control Coordinator (Defense) Brian Turk - Quality Control Coordinator (Special Teams)

# Name Pos. 35 Shannon James CB 39 Demetrius Smalls CB 39 Rivers Bedenbaugh FB 40 Jacob August TE 40 Jason Senn FS 41 Tyler Ragsdale LB 42 Jordan Diggs SS 43 Garrison Gist FB 43 Benji Russell SS 44 Gerald Dixon DE 44 Max Moorman FB 45 Reubyn Walker LB 45 Clayton Stadnik TE 46 Cedrick Malone LB 46 Jakob Huechtker LS 47 Drew Williams LS 48 Nick McGriff LS 48 Dexter Wideman DE 49 Devin Potter TB 49 Boosie Whitlow DE 51 Cody Waldrop OG 52 Phillip Dukes DT 55 David Johnson DE 55 Christian Pellage OT 57 Cory Helms OC 59 Logan Crane LS 63 Blake Camper OT 69 D.J. Park OT 70 Alan Knott OC 71 Brandon Shell OT 72 Donell Stanley OG 74 Mason Zandi OT 75 Will Sport OG 76 Mike Matulis OT 77 Malik Young OT 78 Zack Bailey OG 79 Trey Derouen OG 80 John Dixon WR 81 Hayden Hurst TE 82 Sean Odom WR 83 Jamari Smith CB 84 Kyle Markway TE 85 Michael Almond K/P 85 Devin Dingle WR 86 Kevin Crosby TE 87 Connor Redmond TE 88 Javon Charleston WR 89 Jerell Adams TE 90 Taylor Stallworth DT 91 Shameik Blackshear DE 92 Gerald Dixon, Jr. DT 93 Ulric Jones DT 94 Kelsey Griffin DT 95 Dante Sawyer DE 99 Abu Lamin DT

Hgt. 5-7 5-9 6-2 6-6 5-8 6-0 6-0 5-10 6-0 6-2 5-10 5-10 6-3 6-0 5-6 6-2 6-0 6-4 5-10 6-3 6-2 6-3 6-1 6-6 6-4 6-3 6-8 6-4 6-4 6-6 6-4 6-9 6-5 6-5 6-3 6-6 6-3 5-11 6-5 6-0 5-10 6-4 6-3 5-10 6-1 6-4 6-0 6-6 6-2 6-4 6-3 6-5 6-2 6-3 6-4

Wgt. 154 170 245 258 181 210 209 251 188 269 234 220 240 200 188 213 224 293 203 240 300 319 240 314 301 212 295 325 270 328 320 314 295 293 308 320 314 185 252 194 200 243 200 160 238 225 185 231 308 250 327 300 316 291 326


Hometown/High School/Last College Florence, S.C./South Florence Bluffton, S.C./Bluffton Leesville, S.C./Lexington/Georgia Southern Columbia, S.C./Fork Union Military Beaufort, S.C./Beaufort Mt. Pleasant, S.C./Wando Fort Myers, Fla./Island Coast Rock Hill, S.C./Northwesterm Atlanta, Ga./Woodward Academy Rock Hill, S.C./South Pointe Alpharetta, Ga./Milton Rock Hill, S.C./Florida A&M Greensboro, N.C./Western Guilford Camden, S.C./Camden/Coastal Carolina Rock Hill, S.C./South Pointe Irmo, S.C./Dutch Fork Gainesville, Fla./Gainesville Saluda, S.C./Saluda/Camden Military Granite Falls, N.C./South Caldwell Opelika, Ala./Opelika Seffner, Fla./Armwood Manning, S.C./Manning Lithonia, Ga./Lithonia Brooksville, Fla./Nature Coast Tech Alpharetta, Ga./Milton/Wake Forest Dartmouth, Mass./Dartmouth Virginia Beach, Va./Frank W. Cox Dillon, S.C./Dillon Tyrone, Ga./Sandy Creek Goose Creek, S.C./Goose Creek Floydale, S.C./Latta Chapin, S.C./Chapin Milton, Fla./Pace Boynton Beach, Fla./Park Vista Pelzer, S.C./Woodmont Summerville, S.C./Summerville, S.C. Lilburn, Ga./Parkview Alexandria, Va./Episcopal Jacksonville, Fla./The Bolles School Orangeburg, S.C./Orangeburg Prep Jacksonville, Fla./Fletcher St. Louis, Mo./St. John Vianney North Augusta, S.C./Westminster Summerville, S.C./Cane Bay Bamberg, S.C./Bamberg-Ehrhardt Lawrenceville, Ga./Archer Gurnee, Ill./Warren Pinewood, S.C./Scott’s Branch Mobile, Ala./Murphy Bluffton, S.C./Bluffton Rock Hill, S.C./Northwestern Oxford, Ala./Butler (Kan.) Community College Buford, Ga./Mill Creek Suwanee, Ga./East Mississippi C.C. Fayetteville, N.C./Fort Scott C.C.

Spurs & Feathers • 17

November 11, 2015

Florida Gators

# Name Pos. 1 VernonHargreaves,III DB 3 Treon Harris QB 3 Antonio Morrison LB 4 Brandon Powell WR 5 Ahmad Fulwood WR 6 Quincy Wilson DB 7 Duke Dawson DB 7 Will Grier QB 8 Nick Washington DB 9 Latroy Pittman, Jr. WR 10 Valdez Showers WR 11 Demarcus Robinson WR 12 Josh Grady QB 13 Brian Fallace QB 13 Daniel McMillian LB 14 Luke Del Rio QB 14 Alex McCalister RUSH 15 Jacob Guy QB 16 Austin Hardin K 17 Anderson Proctor QB 17 Jordan Sherit RUSH 18 C.J. Worton WR 19 Johnny Townsend P 20 Marcus Maye DB 21 Kelvin Taylor RB 22 Harry Gornto V QB 22 Case Harrison RB 23 Jeremi Powell LB 24 Brian Poole DB 25 Matt Rolin LB 25 Jordan Scarlett RB 26 Marcell Harris DB 27 Isaac Brinson LB 28 Kylan Johnson DB 29 Evan Schroeder DB 30 DeAndre Goolsby TE 30 Garrett Stephens DB 31 Jalen Tabor DB 32 Jordan Cronkrite RB 32 D.L. Powell DB 33 Tyriek Hopkins RB 34 Alex Anzalone LB 34 Neil MacInnes K 35 Chris Williamson DB 36 Roger Dixon WR 36 Eddie Giles DB 37 Mark Herndon RB 37 Isaac O’Neal DB 38 Bair Diamond TE 38 Kerollin Francois DB 39 Ryan Ferguson TE 39 Michael Iorio DB 40 Jarrad Davis LB 41 Ryan Farr LS 42 Keanu Neal DB 43 Glenn Jarriel WR 43 Mark Norvelis DB 44 Rayshad Jackson LB 45 R.J. Raymond LB

Football Roster

Ht. Wt. Yr. Hometown (Previous School) 5’11” 199 Jr. Tampa/Wharton 5’ 11” 195 SO Miami/Booker T. Washington 6’ 1” 229 SR Bellwood, Ill./Bolingbrook 5’ 9” 184 SO Deerfield Beach/Deerfield Beach 6’ 4” 208 JR Jacksonville/Bishop Kenny 6’ 1” 209 SO Fort Lauderdale/University School 5’ 10” 204 SO Cross City/Dixie County 6’ 2” 203 RFR Davidson, N.C./Davidson Day 6’ 0” 195 RSO Jacksonville/Trinity Christian Academy 6’ 0” 212 SR Ocala/North Marion 6’ 0” 193 RSR Detroit, Mich./Madison 6’ 1” 204 JR Fort Valley, Ga./Peach County 6’ 0” 200 RSR Tampa/Armwood/Vanderbilt 6’ 4” 206 RFR Satellite Beach/Palm Bay 6’ 1” 219 JR Jacksonville/First Coast 6’ 1” 216 RSO Santa Rosa Beach/Oregon State 6’ 6” 239 RJR Winston Salem, N.C./West Forsyth 6’ 5” 222 RJR Dade City/Pasco 5’ 10” 198 RJR Atlanta, Ga./Marist 6’ 3” 209 RSO Vero Beach/St. Edward’s 6’ 4” 250 RSO Tampa/Hillsborough 6’ 0” 195 SO Homestead/South Dade 6’ 1” 202 RSO Orlando/Boone 6’ 0” 207 RJR Melbourne/Holy Trinity Episcopal School 5’ 10” 205 JR Belle Glade/Glades Day 6’ 2” 195 FR Fort Walton Beach/Choctawhatchee 6’ 0” 198 RSO Gainesville/Gainesville 6’ 0” 224 RJR Largo/Pinellas Park 5’ 10” 211 SR Bradenton/Southeast 6’ 3” 216 RSO Ashburn, Va./Briar Woods 5’ 10” 198 FR Fort Lauderdale/St. Thomas Aquinas 6’ 1” 211 RSO Orlando/Dr. Phillips 6’ 0” 198 FR Green Cove Springs/Clay 6’ 1” 220 FR Dallas, Texas/Skyline 5’ 11” 200 RSR New Smyrna Beach/New Smyrna Beach 6’ 4” 243 SO Derby, Kan./Derby 5’ 9” 187 RSO Louisville, Ky./Saint Xavier 6’ 0” 191 SO Washington, D.C./Friendship Collegiate 5’ 11” 205 FR Miami/Westminster Christian 6’ 0” 193 RSO Alachua/Sante Fe 5’ 8” 175 FR St. Petersburg/Lakewood 6’ 3” 244 JR Wyomissing, Pa./Wyomissing Area 6’ 4” 219 SR Tampa/Chamberlain 5’ 11” 188 FR Gainesville, Ga./Gainesville 5’ 10” 195 SR Sanford/Seminole 5’ 9” 161 RFR Jupiter/Dwyer 5’ 9” 198 SR Ocala/Forest 5’ 9” 180 FR Lakeland/Kathleen Senior 6’ 4” 228 RJR Fort Myers/Bishop Verot 5’ 11” 203 RSO Lake Worth/Forest Hill 6’ 3” 226 RFR Largo/Indian Rocks 5’ 10” 194 RJR Nokomis/Venice 6’ 2” 230 JR Kingsland, Ga./Camden County 6’ 0” 207 FR Henderson, Nev./Coronado 6’ 1” 216 JR Bushnell/South Sumter 5’ 8” 173 FR Okeechobee, Fla./Glades Day 5’ 10” 192 RJR Palm Bay/Palm Bay 6’ 0” 221 FR Miami/Miami Norland 6’ 2” 236 RFR Atlantic Beach/Fletcher

Coaches Jim McElwain (Head Coach) Kirk Callahan (Defensive Backs) Geoff Collins (Defensive Coordinator) Kerry Dixon II (Wide Receivers) Greg Nord (Tight Ends/Special Teams Coordinator) Doug Nussmeier (Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks) Chris Rumph (Defensive Line) Randy Shannon (Associate Head Coach/Co-Coordinator/Linebackers) Tim Skipper (Running Backs) Mike Summers (Offensive Line) Mike Kent (Director of Strength & Conditioning)

# Name Pos. 46 LeAndre Rembert LB 47 Jonathan Haney LS 48 Anthony Harrell LB 49 Devin Grimm LS 49 Jacob Tilghman LS 50 Darius Singletary LB 51 Antonio Riles OL 52 Travaris Dorsey OL 52 Steven Stipe LB 53 Kavaris Harkless OL 54 Khairi Clark DL 54 Cameron Dillard OL 55 Thomas Holley DL 56 Christian Garcia LB 57 Caleb Brantley DL 58 Josh Inman DL 58 Jahim Lawrence LB 59 T.J. McCoy OL 59 Dakota Wilson DL 60 Zach Shinn OL 62 Andrew Ivie DL 63 Trip Thurman OL 64 Tyler Jordan OL 65 Donovan White K 66 Nick Buchanan OL 67 Brandon Sandifer OL 68 Richerd Desir-Jones OL 69 Marcus Givens OL 70 Forrest Palmore DL 71 Nick Villano OL 73 Martez Ivey OL 74 Fred Johnson OL 75 Mason Halter OL 76 Marcel Benalcazar OL 77 Andrew Mike OL 78 David Sharpe OL 79 Donovan Welch OL 80 C’yontai Lewis TE 81 Antonio Callaway WR 82 Moral Stephens TE 83 Jake McGee TE 84 Camrin Knight TE 85 Chris Thompson WR 86 Raphael Andrades WR 87 Kalif Jackson WR 88 Ryan Sousa WR 89 Alvin Bailey WR 90 Jonathan Bullard DL 91 Joey Ivie DL 92 Jabari Zuniga DL 93 Taven Bryan DL 94 Bryan Cox, Jr. DL 95 Keivonnis Davis DL 95 Jack Spicer P 96 Cece Jefferson DL 97 John Gould P 97 Justus Reed RUSH 98 Luke Ancrum DL 98 Jorge Powell K

Ht. Wt. Yr. Hometown (Previous School) 5’ 8” 247 RSO Alachua/Santa Fe 6’ 2” 209 RJR Tampa/Plant 6’ 2” 237 RSR Tampa/Jesuit/Georgia Tech 6’ 1” 188 RFR St. Johns/Creekside 6’ 1” 201 FR Daytona Beach/Mainland 6’ 1” 197 FR Jacksonville/Frank Peterson Academy 6’ 4” 322 RSO Lawrenceville, Ga./Archer 6’ 2” 318 RFR Jacksonville/Raines 5’ 11” 216 RSO Waycross, Ga./Pierce County 6’ 5” 300 RFR Jacksonville/Trinity Christian Academy 6’ 2” 321 RFR Hollywood/Chaminade-Madonna 6’ 4” 308 RSO Canton, Mich./Plymouth Canton 6’ 3” 320 RFR Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln 6’ 0” 221 RSO Miami/Belen Jesuit Prep 6’ 2” 314 RSO Crescent City/Crescent City 6’ 2” 280 FR Vero Beach/John Carroll 5’ 11” 211 FR Hollywood/Miami Norland 6’ 1” 302 FR Clermont/South Lake/NC State 6’ 0” 269 RSR Bradenton/Braden River 6’ 2” 280 RFR Plant City/Kathleen Senior 6’ 1” 302 FR Dade City/Pasco 6’ 5” 313 RSR Dover, Del./Dover 6’ 4” 292 FR Jacksonville/Bishop Kenny 6’ 2” 178 SR Sebring/Sebring 6’ 2” 285 FR Dunwoody, Ga./Dunwoody 6’ 3” 357 FR Warner Robins, Ga./Northside 6’4” 290 FR Fort Lauderdale/St. Thomas Aquinas 6’ 0” 263 FR St. Augustine/Nease 6’ 2” 240 RFR Punta Gorda/Charlotte 6’ 2” 312 FR Wellington/American Heritage 6’ 5” 302 FR Apopka/Apopka 6’ 6” 305 FR West Palm Beach/Royal Palm Beach 6’ 6” 295 RSR Hinckley, Ohio/St. Ignatius/Fordham 6’ 7” 334 JR Miramar/Florida State 6’ 6” 302 RFR Tucson, Ariz./Sabino 6’ 6” 355 SO Jacksonville/Fletcher 6’ 4” 286 FR Clermont/Montverde Academy 6’ 4” 228 RFR Eutaw, Ala./Kingwood Christian 5’ 11” 198 FR Miami/Booker T. Washington 6’ 3” 240 RFR Perry/Taylor County 6’ 6” 249 RSR Richmond, Va./Collegiate School/Virginia 6’ 3” 230 FR Tallahassee/Lincoln 6’ 0” 171 JR Gainesville/Gainesville 6’ 0” 203 RJR Tallahassee/Lincoln 6’ 4” 212 FR Neptune Beach/Fletcher 6’ 0” 195 RFR Orlando/Lake Nona 5’ 11” 192 RSO Seffner/Armwood 6’ 3” 283 SR Shelby, N.C./Crest Senior 6’ 3” 295 JR Dade City/Pasco 6’ 3” 263 FR Marietta, Ga./Sprayberry 6’ 5” 292 RFR Casper, Wyo./Natrona County 6’ 3” 268 RJR Ft. Lauderdale/St. Thomas Aquinas 6’ 4” 230 FR Miami/Miami Central 6’ 3” 196 FR Estero/Estero 6’ 1” 275 FR Glen St. Mary/Baker County 6’ 0” 173 FR Ponte Vedra Beach/Howard 6’ 3” 240 RFR Clearwater/Clearwater Central Catholic 6’ 5” 251 FR Sebring/Sebring 5’ 10” 166 RFR Coral Gables/Belen Jesuit Prep≠

18 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

Depth Charts for November 14, 12 p.m. South Carolina OFFENSE WR: WR: WR: -OR- LT: LG: OC: RG:

3 D.J. Neal 15 Matrick Belton 11 Pharoh Cooper 9 Carlton Heard 5 Terry Googer 8 Shamier Jeffery 81 Hayden Hurst 71 Brandon Shell 55 Christian Pellage 76 Mike Matulis 69 D.J. Park 70 Alan Knott 78 Zack Bailey 75 Will Sport 72 Donell Stanley RT: 74 Mason Zandi 63 Blake Camper TE: 89 Jerell Adams 84 Kyle Markway 86 Kevin Crosby QB: 10 Perry Orth 19 Lorenzo Nuñez 6 Connor Mitch 12 Michael Scarnecchia FB: 39 Rivers Bedenbaugh TB: 22 Brandon Wilds

6-3, 193, Fr. 6-4, 209, Jr. 5-11, 207, Jr. 6-0, 182, Sr. 6-4, 226, RFr. 6-1, 198, Jr. 6-5, 252, Fr. 6-6, 328, Sr. 6-6, 314, Fr. 6-5, 293, Sr. 6-4, 325, So. 6-4, 270, So. 6-6, 320, Fr. 6-5, 295, Sr. 6-4, 320, RFr. 6-9, 314, Jr. 6-8, 295, Fr. 6-6, 231, Sr. 6-4, 243, Fr. 6-1, 238, RFr. 6-1, 203, Jr. 6-3, 210, Fr. 6-3, 211, So. 6-4, 210, RFr. 6-2, 245, So. 6-2, 220, Sr.

Stone Mountain, Ga. Columbia, S.C. Havelock, N.C. Athens, Ga. Atlanta, Ga. St. Matthews, S.C. Jacksonville, Fla. Goose Creek, S.C. Brooksville, Fla. Boynton Beach, Fla. Dillon, S.C. Tyrone, Ga. Summerville, S.C. Milton, Fla. Floydale, S.C. Chapin, S.C. Virginia Beach, Va. Pinewood, S.C. St. Louis, Mo. Bamberg, S.C. Ponte Vedra, Fla. Kennesaw, Ga. Raleigh, N.C. Fleming Island, Fla. Leesville, S.C. Blythewood, S.C.

33 David Williams 7 Shon Carson

6-1, 222, So. 5-8, 206, Sr.

Philadelphia, Pa. Scranton, S.C.


49 Boosie Whitlow 55 David Johnson 5 Darius English 95 Dante Sawyer 94 Kelsey Griffin 92 Gerald Dixon, Jr. 52 Phillip Dukes 99 Abu Lamin 8 Marquavius Lewis 44 Gerald Dixon 18 Cedrick Cooper 10 Skai Moore 28 Jonathan Walton 11 T.J. Holloman 4 Bryson Allen-Williams 23 Larenz Bryant 12 Ernest Hawkins 20 T.J. Gurley 26 Jasper Sasser 7 Al Harris Jr. 3 Chris Lammons 21 Isaiah Johnson

6-3, 240, Fr. 6-1, 240, So. 6-6, 225, Jr. 6-3, 291, So. 6-2, 316, Jr. 6-3, 327, Sr. 6-3, 319, Sr. 6-4, 326, Jr. 6-3, 264, Jr. 6-2, 269, Sr. 6-2, 248, Sr. 6-2, 218, Jr. 6-0, 235, Jr. 6-2, 231, Jr. 6-1, 233, So. 6-0, 220, Jr. 6-1, 224, So. 5-10, 193, Sr. 6-0, 210, So. 5-11, 163, So. 5-10, 183, So. 6-0, 206, Sr.

Opelika, Ala. Lithonia, Ga. Powder Springs, Ga. Suwanee, Ga. Buford, Ga. Rock Hill, S.C. Manning, S.C. Fayetteville, N.C. Greenwood, S.C. Rock Hill, S.C. Lithonia, Ga. Cooper City, Fla. Daphne, Ala. Stone Mountain, Ga. Ellenwood, Ga. Charlotte, N.C. Baltimore, Md. Cairo, Ga. Jacksonville, Fla. Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Lauderhill, Fla. Cary, N.C.

6 Chris Moody SS: 24 D.J. Smith 42 Jordan Diggs RCB: 1 Rico McWilliams 16 Rashad Fenton 22 Jamari Smith

6-1, 215, Jr. 5-11, 195, So. 6-0, 209, Jr. 5-11, 186, Jr. 5-10, 180, Fr. 5-10, 200, So.

McDonough, Ga. Marietta, Ga. Fort Myers, Fla. Hampton, Ga. Miami, Fla. Jacksonville, Fla.


19 Landon Ard 29 Elliott Fry 29 Elliott Fry 19 Landon Ard 13 Sean Kelly 85 Michael Almond 16 Rashad Fenton 32 Rod Talley 11 Pharoh Cooper 47 Drew Williams 48 Nick McGriff 13 Sean Kelly 19 Landon Ard

5-9, 182, Sr. 6-0, 164, Jr. 6-0, 164, Jr. 5-9, 182, Sr. 5-10, 189, Jr. 6-3, 200, Fr. 5-10, 180, Fr. 5-10, 201, So. 5-11, 207, Jr. 6-2, 213, Jr. 6-0, 224, RFr. 5-10, 189, Jr. 5-9, 182, Sr.

Rock Hill, S.C. Frisco, Texas Frisco, Texas Rock Hill, S.C. Oakland, Fla. North Augusta, S.C. Miami, Fla. Laurens, S.C. Havelock, N.C. Irmo, S.C. Gainesville, Fla. Oakland, Fla. Rock Hill, S.C.

Florida OFFENSE WR: TE: LT: LG: C: RG: RT: WR: WR:

QB: RB: -OR-

11 Demarcus Robinson 6-1, 208, Jr. 5 Ahmad Fulwood 6-4, 210, Jr. 85 Chris Thompson 6-0, 171, Jr. 83 Jake McGee 6-6, 244, Sr. 80 C’yontai Lewis 6-4, 233, RFr. 30 DeAndre Goolsby 6-4, 243, So. 78 David Sharpe 6-6, 359, So. 73 Martez Ivey 6-5, 311, Fr. 73 Martez Ivey 6-5, 311, Fr. 52 Travaris Dorsey 6-2, 321, RFr. 54 Cam Dillard 6-4, 311, So. 64 Tyler Jordan 6-4, 294, Fr. 63 Trip Thurman 6-5, 307, Sr. 51 Antonio Riles 6-4, 312, So. 75 Mason Halter 6-6, 295, Sr. 74 Fred Johnson 6-6, 312, Fr. 81 Antonio Callaway 5-11, 206, Fr. 10 Valdez Showers 6-0, 193, Sr. 18 C.J. Worton 6-0, 198, So. 4 Brandon Powell 5-9, 185, So. 89 Alvin Bailey 5-11, 189, So. 3 Treon Harris 5-11, 198, So. 12 Josh Grady 6-0, 200, Sr. 21 Kelvin Taylor 5-10, 206, Jr. 32 Jordan Cronkrite 5-11, 205, Fr. 25 Jordan Scarlett 5-10, 212, Fr.

DEFENSE Fort Valley, Ga. Jacksonville, Fla. Gainesville, Fla. Richmond, Va. Eutaw, Ala. Derby, Kan. Jacksonville, Fla. Apopka, Fla. Apopka, Fla. Jacksonville, Fla. Canton, Mich. Jacksonville, Fla. Dover, Del. Lawrenceville, Ga. Hinckley, Ohio West Palm Beach, Fla. Miami, Fla. Detroit, Mich. Homestead, Fla. Deerfield Beach, Fla. Seffner, Fla. Miami, Fla. Tampa, Fla. Belle Glade, Fla. Miami, Fla. Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

CB: 1 Vernon Hargreaves III 5-11, 200, Jr. 24 Brian Poole 5-10, 208, Sr. DE: 94 Bryan Cox Jr. 6-3, 265, Jr. 96 Cece Jefferson 6-1, 270, Fr. NT: 57 Caleb Brantley 6-2, 303, So. 93 Taven Bryan 6-5, 290, RFr. -OR- 54 Khairi Clark 6-2, 321, RFr. DT: 90 Jon Bullard 6-3, 280, Sr. 91 Joey Ivie 6-3, 290, Jr. RUSH: 14 Alex McCallister 6-6, 235, Jr. 17 Jordan Sherit 6-4, 250, So. CB: 31 Jalen Tabor 6-0, 197, So. 6 Quincy Wilson 6-1, 210, So. NICKEL: 24 Brian Poole 5-10, 208, Sr. 7 Duke Dawson 5-11, 203, So. MLB: 3 Antonio Morrison 6-1, 234, Sr. 48 Anthony Harrell 6-2, 237, Sr. WLB: 40 Jarrad Davis 6-2, 232, Jr. 13 Daniel McMillian 6-1, 216, Jr. SAFETY: 42 Keanu Neal 6-1, 215, Jr. 26 Marcell Harris 6-1, 211, So. SAFETY: 20 Marcus Maye 6-0, 210, Jr. 8 Nick Washington 6-0, 189, So.

SPECIAL TEAMS Tampa, Fla. Bradenton, Fla. Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Glen St. Mary, Fla. Crescent City, Fla. Casper, Wyo. Hollywood, Fla. Shelby, N.C. Dade City, Fla. Winston Salem, N.C. Tampa, Fla. Washington, D.C. Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Bradenton, Fla. Cross City, Fla. Bellwood, Ill. Tampa, Fla. Kingsland, Ga. Jacksonville, Fla. Bushnell, Fla. Orlando, Fla. Melbourne, Fla. Jacksonville, Fla.

K: P: KOR: PR: LS: H:

16 Austin Hardin 34 Neil Macinnes 19 Johnny Townsend 16 Austin Hardin 4 Brandon Powell 81 Antonio Callaway 81 Antonio Callaway 4 Brandon Powell 41 Ryan Farr 19 Johnny Townsend 22 Case Harrison

5-10, 205, Jr. 6-4, 219, Sr. 6-1, 200, So. 5-10, 205, Jr. 5-9, 185, So. 5-11, 206, Fr. 5-11, 206, Fr. 5-9, 185, So. 6-0, 213, Fr. 6-1, 200, So. 6-0, 196, So.

*These depth charts are taken from the listings from each team’s previous game. Spurs & Feathers goes to print shortly after the conclusion of each game. Please visit over the course of the week for updated depth charts.

Atlanta, Ga. Tampa, Fla. Orlando, Fla. Atlanta, Ga. Deerfield Beach, Fla. Miami, Fla. Miami, Fla. Deerfield Beach, Fla. Henderson, Nev. Orlando, Fla. Gainesville, Fla.

Spurs & Feathers • 19

November 11, 2015

Carrera: ‘Everything is going to be okay if we do our job’ by kyle heck Reporter

Michael Carrera is in a comfortable place entering his senior season with South Carolina. After going through growing pains over his first few years, both as an individual and as a team, he is ready for another year to begin. “It’s exciting, you know?” Carrera said when asked about the season beginning on Sunday, Nov. 8 with an exhibition against Allen. “Just another game and we see things that we have to work on, but we’re excited about this week.” Carrera came in as a freshman and had to go through the traditional transition to college basketball. His sophomore year, the Gamecock roster was littered with freshmen and sophomores and last season, Carrera had to fight off a couple of injuries throughout the year. Not only that, but South Carolina sometimes had as few as seven or eight players, meaning that All Gamecock he could not take any basketball days off to rest and coverage recover. sponsored by But this year, the Yesterdays Gamecocks have plenty of able players and practices are as competitive and beneficial as they have ever been. “It’s making me happy that I’m going to leave this program with my head up in knowing that there are a lot of guys that are going to take care of business when I leave,” Carrera said. The Venezuela native said he hasn’t thought much about life after his senior year, he’s just focused on helping the Gamecocks continue to improve this season and feels good about the team’s chances to do just that. “I think we’re in a great place right now,” Carrera said. “We’re doing really good, we just have to get better at some things.” As one of several leaders on the team this year, Carrera has enjoyed having a solid upperclassmen presence on the Gamecocks. He also said it’s had an effect on head coach Frank Martin. “Leadership, that’s the biggest difference in this team,” Carrera said. “Now coach is

photo by allen sharpe

a little bit relaxed. That’s another big thing. Now the seniors have the poise of kind of running practice because we know what to do in practice. Compared to other years, it’s different, it’s awesome seeing (Martin) like that, happy.” Carrera described the last three weeks of practice as a “war” and said they have been

the best practices he’s experienced in his life. Those emphatic words show just how much this team has benefited from growing up and getting more talented players into the fold. With the season about to begin and with the Gamecocks facing increased expectations, Carrera is ready to go to war against

South Carolina’s upcoming opponents. “Every year we have expectations, every year we’re supposed to be good, but something happens and we’re not,” Carrera said. “But this year for us, it’s sort of special. There’s a voice in our heads that’s telling us everything is going to be okay if we do our job and practice hard.”

20 • Spurs & Feathers

Asia Dozier is a ‘student of the game’

November 11, 2015

All Gamecock basketball coverage sponsored by Yesterdays

by kyle heck Reporter

ald’s All-American coming out of high school. “Just being able to talk to him and South Carolina head coach Dawn not necessarily being all about points Staley had high praise for senior guard and statistics, but about breaking down Asia Dozier at the Gamecocks’ annual plays and seeing other options,” Dozier media day in Columbia. said. “Just analyzing things from a “Asia Dozier is by far probably our point guard’s perspective with him has most intelligent player,” Staley said. also helped me.” “She understands what we want. She’s The 6-foot guard has also taken on a as versatile as they come. When you’re new role this offseason. Staley said that able to move around and be as versatile Dozier has started to play in the post as she is, she’s going to be on the floor.” more to give that area more depth. It’s Those reasons are why Dozier has something that Staley said Dozier has been a starter for the Gamecocks over taken in stride. the past two seasons. While other playDozier herself said she enjoys the new ers may get more attention than she challenge. does, that doesn’t take anything away “I don’t mind it so much on the offenfrom how important she is to the team. sive end,” Dozier said. “It’s a little bit The senior was a team captain last different concepts and different physiyear and is expected to be one yet again cality on the defensive side, just being this season. Dozier played in every able to bang with them and try to hold game last year as the Gamecocks admy own down there in the post, it’s a vanced all the way to the NCAA Final little bit different than what I’m used to. Four. But I’m adjusting and my teammates However, she was taken aback after are helping me to adjust too.” hearing what her coach said about her. Staley also said that Dozier has been “That’s one of the greatest complishooting lights-out so far during prements I’ve ever gotten,” Dozier said. season practice and if that continues, “But definitely just trying to be a stuthe Gamecocks will have a dangerous dent of the game for as long as I can stretch-forward in the senior from Coremember. It’s not always playing as a lumbia. player, but trying to play with the perAs one of five seniors on the team, spective of a coach. Just really trying to Dozier knows that this is her last get an understanding of what (Staley) chance to try and help the Gamecocks wants and seeing the bigger picture. accomplish their ultimate goal, which That’s what she talks about a lot of is win the National Championship. She times. A lot of people don’t understand plans on giving it everything she’s got the smaller decisions that she makes, to try and make that happen in 2015-16. but she makes them because there’s a “The excitement is out the roof,” bigger picture.” commented Dozier. “We’re anticipatDozier said she grew up admiring ing a great season. I think we’ve set the way NBA star Kobe Bryant studies high expectations for ourselves as well the game and knew how important that as the community and everyone else. is to having a successful career at any We’re not fearful of them, we’re ready level. to live up to those standards and we’re She also credited her brother P.J., a willing to do whatever it takes not just freshman on the South Carolina men’s to get back to where we were, but winbasketball team who was a McDonning a National Championship.”

photo by allen sharpe

Spurs & Feathers • 21

November 11, 2015

Rice bucked the family trend when choosing South Carolina by kyle heck Reporter

Joe Rice grew up going to Clemson football games. He moved around a lot growing up and one of the places he lived was Clinton, South Carolina. His dad and brother are graduates of Clemson so everything seemed in line for Rice to follow their lead. Not so fast. “When I started looking for colleges, I had no interest in Clemson,” Rice said. “I just ended up at South Carolina with no previous contact with the University. I was the first person in my family to go to the University of South I was the Carolina and now my first person daughter has graduatfrom there as well, in my family ed both undergraduate to go to the and law school.” Rice himself took University that same route and is now one of the promiof South nent lawyers in the Carolina and state of South Carolina. Over that time now my he has never forgotten the University daughter has about and that started when he was a student there. graduated “I joined a fraternity from there and I really enjoyed my years there,” Rice as well said. “I can’t give you one or two favorite Joe Rice moments when I was in college, I just enjoyed college. I didn’t miss very many football games throughout my seven years in the University.” That trend continued when Rice started practicing law and he soon joined the Gamecock Club, where he has been a member for the last 34 years. He was among several longtime Gamecock fans that were honored before South Carolina took on Kentucky on Sept. 12 during a special ceremony that celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Gamecock Club. “That was special, being the anniversary,” Rice said. “But what I do is a small thing compared to what thousands of others do. It’s special, it’s fun, I like to go out on the field. I’ve had the opportunity to go out on the field on

photo by allen sharpe

several occasions. Probably the time that was most exciting was the time I flipped the coin for the South Carolina-Clemson game a few years ago.” Rice’s success as a lawyer has allowed him to be be able to give a lot back to the University. He has no trouble remembering the day that former head coach Steve Spurrier and former Athletics Director Eric Hyman came down to visit him. “Coach explained the importance of the facilities, the importance of activities, the importance of the alumni help,” Rice said. “To my great surprise, his number one focus was getting a teaching facility for the athletes, what became the Dodie (Academic Enrichment Center). He wanted the academic assistance program solidified because he felt that was the key. I think a lot of people think about what he did for the University and our student-athletes to make sure that they were going to get the education they came to get.” When Rice heard that, he decided to get more involved with the University and currently the Rice Athletics Center bears the family name. After law school, Rice worked less than 100 miles from Columbia, so he was able to make most of the football games with his co-workers. That trend continues today. “That was one of our social things and I just fell in love with that process and my family has,” Rice said. “I dare say I’ve missed games from time to time, but I haven’t missed many home games in the last 30 years.”


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22 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

Ultimate Tailgaters continues to grow

by kyle heck Reporter

Just over two decades ago, Chris Fulmer decided to start Ultimate Tailgaters as a way to help improve the overall tailgating experience. Around three years ago, Fulmer and his wife, Kathy, decided to start competing at barbecue competitions. Tailgating was something they already loved doing so why not try to make some money out of it? “It’s probably exceeded what I thought it would, but I’m really enjoying it,” said Fulmer, who is also President of the Aiken County Gamecock Club. “My wife Kathy is my cooking partner. I’m sure some teams out there have a husband and wife, but most of the time it’s a couple of guys or three or four guys or something, so it’s not the norm. We both enjoy it and she loves doing it and she travels with me.” Fulmer has significantly increased the amount of competitions this year for the Ultimate Tailgaters, who won the 2013 National Collegiate Tailgating Championship. After a couple of years of getting the feel of competing in barbecue competitions, Ultimate Tailgaters has been this year,” Fulmer said. “The first three years all over the place this year. was not as big a schedule. I guess we did about “We’ll probably compete in about 25 contests six or eight, kind of learning the ropes and try-

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photo by brian hand of fulmer at aiken county gamecock club event

ing to figure it all out. Once it hits about the second week of February, we’re pretty much competing somewhere almost every weekend until the middle of June.” Fulmer doesn’t do much during the fall because of football season, but he still tries to make competitions when he can. For instance, he and Kathy were in Anderson during the open week for South Carolina football. And while the schedule is full in the spring, Fulmer still manages to make as many Gamecock baseball games as he can. “We end up sacrificing a Friday night game sometimes and then getting there a little later for the Saturday game, hopefully for a 4 o’clock pitch,” Fulmer said. Ultimate Tailgaters occasionally provides the meals for both the baseball and football teams and it was that connection that allowed Fulmer to help out first responders after destructive floods swept through the state in early October. Fulmer was looking for ways he could help out when someone at the University put him in contact with the Columbia Fire Department. Fulmer decided to head to the headquarters of the relief operation in Richland County and fed around 125 firefighters and other first responders. It was something Fulmer was happy to do, especially with how busy those first responders have been trying to help everyone else out. “Just like anything, you try to think forward and give back,” Fulmer said. “But I was able to do that and I was glad to do it. Some of these people hadn’t had a chance to eat much of nothing. They’ve been going at it 24/7, some of them away from home. It’s maybe like a guy being

away at college and never being able to eat good and coming home to Mom and getting a good home-cooked meal. They were excited just getting some good barbecue. There was nothing left, I can tell you that. Everybody cleaned their plates. It was good.” The ability to help out in that situation is another plus to what Fulmer does. In general, just the ability to tailgate with friends and make new ones is the biggest thing that makes barbecue competitions so enjoyable. “We’ve gotten to know a lot of cooking teams,” Fulmer said. “Quite honestly, barbecue competitions are just like tailgating except there’s no football game. I don’t mean it’s quite like that, but it’s that kind of atmosphere because people are excited to be there. It’s the same kind of camaraderie you see with tailgating. I enjoy stuff like that, fellowship is really big for me.” While Fulmer didn’t necessarily think things would get as big as they are now, he’s just enjoying the ride. A lifelong tailgater, Fulmer and his wife are starting to get the hang of barbecue competitions. “I didn’t know when we started competing that we would get to this point where we did this many comps and got a big trailer and six sponsors,” Fulmer said. And you can bet that Fulmer has a Gamecock flag flying high on his trailer wherever he goes, even if it is up in Anderson, which is supposedly Clemson country. “I’ll still have my flag flying,” Fulmer said. “We’ll be up in Anderson so I’m sure I’ll get a lot of lip service up there, but that’s okay. I know who my team is.”

Spurs & Feathers • 23

November 11, 2015

Coates works hard to be a complete player

by kyle heck Reporter

Despite playing from the bench most of her first two years, Alaina Coates has still managed to rack up the awards during her time as a Gamecock. She was named the SEC Freshman of the Year as well as the league’s Co-6th Player of the Year two seasons ago and last year, Coates made the SEC There’s a fire All-Defensive Team. She also shined in in this team South Carolina’s run to NCAA Final Four that no one the as she was named to the SEC All-Tournahas seen ment team in addition ever since to being named the Greensboro the season NCAA Regional Most Outstanding Player. last year. Coates developed a Everybody reputation of being a off the bench cawill be able spark pable of taking over a to tell. We’re game for a short period of time. As she enters hungry and her junior season, howCoates is working we’re ready ever, to become a player that can make an impact to go. over the course of the entire game, which is Alaina Coates a scary proposition for South Carolina’s opponents. “I knew with losing Elem (Ibiam) and losing Aleighsa (Welch) that I was going to be put into a position where I would be potentially playing more minutes and possibly be starting, so I just took it upon myself with (performance coach) Katie All Gamecock (Fowler) to go above basketball and beyond,” Coates coverage said. “Because I know sponsored by the harder that I work Yesterdays now, the easier it will come to me later.” During a recent team retreat, Coates said that several of her teammates told her that they could see a difference in her this year and head coach Dawn Staley has also praised the Irmo native, saying that she’s already in midseason form. Coates credits a lot of that to her experience over the summer playing for USA basketball at the Pan Am games.

photo by allen sharpe

“I just kind of made it an initiative to take the role that I played on the USA team in Canada (and) bring that to my team,” Coates said. “I’m putting in more than just one effort. I’m going harder, I’m healthier. Mentally, I feel like I can say I’m mentally tough now. We can have harder practices and have a lot of running and I’ll be able to get through it and be able to coach my teammates on.” Coates and sophomore A’ja Wilson are the

“natural choices” to start in the post to start the season, according to Staley, because of their experience and talent. If that remains the case, it will be fairly new territory for both players since they usually came off of the bench during last season’s run to the Final Four. However, Coates is excited to take on the opportunity and is looking forward to trying to help the Gamecocks get back to the Final

Four and beyond. Coates said that not only her demeanor has changed, but the entire team’s has. “We came close to our goal last year, but of course we came short,” Coates said. “Just having that experience, it just makes you even more hungry. There’s a fire in this team that no one has seen ever since the season last year. Everybody will be able to tell. We’re hungry and we’re ready to go.”

24 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

Steele trades high tops for coach’s whistle by brad muller South Carolina Director of Content

his ear about handling certain situations and some things I’ve never spoke to him about – ‘when this is going on, this is why I do this’ – just to give him perspective. I think he’s going to be a heck of a coach if that’s what he chooses to pursue.” Steele added that the coaching staff has been very supportive of his goals. “The coaches have all been very helpful,” Steele said. “They’re in my court. They have always been there for me, and they want me to be as successful as I can be. Every day, Frank comes in and tells me something. He’ll say, ‘as a coach, you’re going to have to manage this’ and sometimes he uses it as a way to talk about somebody else in a positive way as he’s talking to me. He’ll say, ‘as a coach, you’re going to want to recruit a guy like Mike (Carrera) who wants to rebound, and who just loves competing.’ So he’ll use that as an opportunity to compliment someone.” As Steele adjusts to not wearing the uniform on game day, he is thankful for the opportunities put before him in his time at South Carolina and hopes he can make an impact, even if he’s not the one taking the shot or making the pass. “The reason I wanted to play for Frank and his staff is because I knew I was going to be the best player I could be when I left,” Steele said. “There’s no question about that. It was awesome to see how far I could go and reach my potential as a player. We have a lot of young guys, and they’re making a lot of the mistakes that I made when I was young. I know what it’s like to be there and be helpless or lost a little bit. I just want to help the team any way that I can so we can enjoy as much success as possible.” As he struggles with what his game day attire will look like on the bench this year,

Steele sees a bright side in a change to his game day routine. “As a player, I always prepared myself like I was going to get in and play,” Steele said. “Now, I might just eat a little more during the pre-game meal.” After getting a chance to prove his worth as a student-athlete, and doing the same as a coach, Steele is quick to point out how important Martin’s relationship is with his team. “You can just joke around with him off the court,” Steele said. “Nothing is off limits. You can make fun of him if he gets a bad haircut or if he’s wearing bad clothes. You can say anything to him, and he’ll accept it and shoot it right back to you. It’s a lot of fun to poke the bear sometimes.” At least now he doesn’t have to run wind sprints.


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Brian Steele has never been afraid to “go for it.” Three years ago, Steele took a chance and came to South Carolina to walk on to the Gamecock men’s basketball team during Frank Martin’s first year as the head coach. Fast forward to the beginning of this semester where recurring knee problems led to a discussion with Martin and the team doctor, and Steele traded in his high tops for a whistle as he will serve as a student assistant coach for the upcoming season. “I really just rolled the dice because there was no guarantee that I would make the team when I first came here,” Steele said. “I’ve always wanted to coach. I’ve never thought about anything else except coaching basketball. Now that dream is becoming a reality. Frank went over options with me on how to keep me around. He knew I wanted to be a “He has a desire in his heart for our bascoach, so he started talking about having me ketball team that is phenomenal,” Martin stay on as a student assistant.” As he begins the next phase of what he said. “He’s got great spirit. Think about this hopes will become his long-term profession, – when we beat Kentucky two years ago, he Steele admits it wasn’t an easy decision to was right in the middle of the whole thing. stop playing. I’m not talking about the celebration. I’m “It was awful at first to be honest,” Steele talking about making the plays that helped said. “Basketball is all I have really known. us win the game. That’s the kind of spirit he There are pictures of me playing when I was has. He has believed in this from day one. He in diapers, so to not be playing felt like a gicontinues to do that.” ant void in my life. Coaching and being able That win over Kentucky sticks out as one of to help out is helping to fill that void, but I Steele’s fondest memories. will still miss playing.” “There are so many memories,” Steele Steele earned the respect of coaches and said. “Obviously beating Kentucky (March teammates after earning a spot as a walk-on 1, 2014) was an awesome experience. Beatthree years ago by doing his job when his ing Kentucky and having everyone run on number was called, and was evidenced by the floor was awesome. I actually got hit in the pair of big 3-point field goals he drained the face and split my lip open when they all to help the Gamecocks maintain a lead in a rushed the floor. It was crazy.” win over Missouri last year. As he transitions into his new role, Steele “I think the one thing I’ve always been is already getting an education and a new able to communicate with the guys is effort,” perspective. Steele said. “That’s what I want to do as a “You see the floor differently,” Steele said. coach too. There was never a day where I “Being removed from playing, you kind of didn’t want to play or compete. That wasn’t see all five guys at once as opposed to just an option. I gave my best every day. So now, knowing your responsibilities. So it gives you if a guy is not doing what he needs to do the opportunity to help all five guys at the effort-wise, I’m always a voice same time. There are little things that can tell him that I never took that Frank used to get on us about, a day off, so you can’t do that eiand I used to wonder why. Now, ther. I was very vocal when I was I see why he would get on us for on the floor as a player. I never certain things, and why they’re a had a problem talking to the guys, big deal.” so it’s not really that different. I’m “He’s in the transition phase still very talkative. I don’t have a now, mentally,” Martin said. problem trying to communicate “He’s a teammate and is in there All Gamecock with them.” with them every day. He’s in the basketball Coach Martin is confident that locker room with them every day, coverage those attributes that made Steele but once practice starts, he has sponsored by successful as a student-athlete to start thinking like a coach. I Yesterdays will help him as a coach. spend a lot of time at practice in

November 11, 2015

Spurs & Feathers • 25

Lifelong Gamecocks carry on family legacy

by kyle heck Reporter

Melanie Davis has been going to South Carolina football games for as long as she can remember. Her grandparents owned and operated drugstores in Enoree and Woodruff and Melanie and her siblings would take turns going to Gamecock games with their grandparents. Melanie and her husband, Brandon, have continued that tradition to this day. In fact, they still sit in the same seats. “That makes it very special to us,” Brandon said. “When we were dating and when we married, we would go to the games with them and my wife’s parents, so we’ve just sort of made it a family affair.” Melanie’s grandfather, John Stinson, joined the Gamecock Club in 1954. In 2005, Melanie and Brandon assumed the Gamecock Club membership after the passing of Stinson and they have held it for the last 10 years. That means a Gamecock Club membership has been in the family for a whopping 61 years, which earned the family a recognition earlier this football season. Prior to South Carolina’s game against Kentucky, Melanie and Brandon Davis were two of the Legendary Fans of the Game as the Gamecock Club celebrated its 75th anniversary. It was a special moment for the lifelong Gamecock fans. “I’ve told some friends since then that I’ve checked one item off my bucket list, because I’ve always wanted to be on the field for that,” Brandon said. “It lived up to everything I had imagined. My wife and our kids had a ball being down there for the pregame festivities, “2001” and the entrance. It was extremely loud. I was surprised at how much louder it seemed on the field as opposed to where we were in the stands. We were surprised at how big the players were.” The couple have four kids that are, of course, big Gamecock fans and they look forward to hopefully passing down the Gamecock Club membership to them one day. For now, however, Melanie and Brandon are enjoying their time at Gamecock games now and looking back at memories. “I remember tailgating even back when it was dirt out there in the parking lot,” said Melanie, who is a dentist. “It was just a fun time and family event and we enjoyed the atmosphere.” “As South Carolinians, we’re proud to support the state University athletic program,” added Brandon, who is a physician. With the efforts of Athletics Director Ray Melanie and Brandon are looking forward to fields. Tanner and his staff along with the facilcontinuing to watch the University of South “I really believe with what’s currently inity improvements around the University, Carolina succeed both on and off the athletic vested in the facilities and the support of the

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people of the Gamecocks, hopefully we have the structure in place to be successful for a long time coming,” Brandon concluded.

26 • Spurs & Feathers

November 11, 2015

Off the charts: A rare injury and an even more remarkable return

The game didn’t count and will soon be tearing out chunks of cartilage. Blanton still forgotten. That’s the nature of exhibitions: has a sinuous, eight-inch scar running across a 40-minute showcase that gives fans a first his left buttock. glimpse of their team, a happy blowout against In addition to the severity, the medical staff an overmatched opponent, the stats inflated was also concerned about its rarity. Rodger and largely meaningless. and the USC doctors scoured lit reviews, lookSouth Carolina’s exhibition game against ing for a precedent in a high-level basketball Allen meant everything to TeMarcus Blanton. player. They couldn’t find one. Complicating A return to the game he loves. A reward it further, the injury happened to his dominant for the seven-days-a-week rehab he had to jumping leg - as a right-hander, Blanton lifts endure. A tangible triumph over an injury so off his left leg for layups. They also had to rare, USC’s medical staff couldn’t find a single worry about avascular necrosis – death of precedent for it in a basketball player. bone tissue. Doctors can perform a delicate A long road already walked. The first step surgery, but they still have no control over tisin a long road ahead. sue dying. It was the reason SEC legend Bo For Blanton, a 6’5” guard from Locust Jackson, who suffered a hip subluxation while Grove, Ga., the exhibition capped a year-long playing for the Oakland Raiders, underwent a rehabilitation from a severe hip injury that hip replacement and retired from football. threatened to end his Gamecock career before The staff kept invoking Jackson’s name it even began. when discussing the injury. Jackson resumed “It’s a blessing to be able to run and play his career, of course, but in baseball, the less again,” Blanton told me at South Carolina’s physically taxing of the two sports he played. media day. Contact and collisions are unavoidable in basHis injury didn’t happen in a flash like most ketball. Jumping, cutting and changing direcsevere injuries. There was no sudden hit, no tions are an every-play occurrence. ESPN deblood-curdling scream, no player writhing scribed Blanton as a slasher in his high school on the floor while his concerned teammates recruiting profile. looked on. Blanton got injured without conBlanton, 19, pondered what the medical tact, in a defensive drill during the Gamestaff told him. cocks’ first week of preseason practice prior to “I said only a miracle and a blessing could the 2014-15 season. He finished the drill, ran help me at this time,” he thought. back down the floor, then stopped at midcourt He underwent surgery October 24, a week because his left leg had gone numb. before the Gamecocks’ exhibition opener Athletic trainer Mark Rodger put him on against Benedict. After six months, doctors crutches, treating it like he would a hip flexor would determine whether his hip had regained strain. When Blanton came back the next day enough strength to continue working toward a and didn’t feel any better, Rodger sent him for return. If it hadn’t progressed to their liking, an MRI. his playing career was over. Living a normal When USC orthopedic surgeon Dr. Chris life, or maybe playing rec league basketball, Mazoue saw the results, he was floored. would be the new goal. “He called me and said, ‘Uh, and what did “Initially the prognosis was eight to 12 he do again?’” Rodger recalled. months recovery. But that was just recovery. Blanton had suffered a hip subluxation, Will this be that eight to 12 months of just livwhere the ball of the hip briefly pops out ing a functional life, or eight to 12 months of back in again. He also fractured his posterior actually being able to play basketball, or eight acetabulum, where the head of the femur to 12 months of being able to play Division 1, meets the pelvis, and suffered SEC-caliber basketball? Noa significant amount of cartibody knew,” Rodger said. lage damage. Doctors said the Blanton walked on crutches injury is more consistent with for the first 10 weeks, unable to victims of motorcycle accidents put any weight on his left side. or people who fall off ladders. The hip was so damaged, the He wasn’t predisposed to it, glute muscle so tender from either: Blanton and his teamwhere the surgeon made the mates had a body composition incision, it took him six weeks analysis done the week before. before he could lie down on a His bone density readings came trainer’s table and lift his leg. back completely normal. That’s the thing Blanton “It was freakish,” Rodger learned about hip injuries - you said. can’t focus solely on the hip. It was also so serious, a There were ankle exercises, and trauma surgeon had to be called knee exercises, and quad drills, in to operate. He sliced through and core workouts, all meant to Blanton’s gluteus muscle, inAndy Demetra improve his strength, flexibility serting three plates and five Contributing and range of motion. He had screws into the hip joint and Writer to literally re-build his leg from

the ground up. Rodger made him do rudimentary drills like tapping his foot or spelling the alphabet with his toes. He took Glucosamine, an over-the-counter supplement marketed mainly to geriatrics, to lubricate his joints. Getting in and out of cars was a struggle, trying to get his leg in a comfortable position. After 10 weeks, Blanton progressed to walking on an underwater treadmill. He started with the water at his chest, his legs absorbing about 20 percent of his body weight. His first session lasted five minutes. “From looking at it, I thought it was really basic. But when I actually physically tried to do it, it was hard, man. It was crazy how I felt like I couldn’t do anything at the time,” Blanton said. One snapshot sums up how far he had to go. In March, South Carolina played its last game of the season at the SEC Tournament in Nashville, a quarterfinal matchup against Georgia. At Vanderbilt’s practice gym that morning, the Gamecocks ran through their offensive sets on one side of the floor, a sophisticated ballet of cutting and passing. On the other side, Blanton was leaning down on one leg, picking up paper Gatorade cups. Rodger, his companion throughout the process, laughed when asked to add up the amount of time Blanton spent on his recovery. “It was multiple times a day. I’d say at minimum it was three to five hours a day, seven days a week, every day,” he estimated. Blanton did it for six months straight. The days were long, the drills tedious, the work solitary and simplistic. Blanton’s mental strength blew Rodger away. “The kid had an unbelievable will and mindset. That was huge. He never complained, he never got frustrated. His willingness to work and his mindset and motivation was off the chart, and to his day is off the chart,” he said. His progress was slow, but incremental and unmistakable. Six months in, at a time when his freshman season should have been winding down, Blanton was cleared for light jogging. Basic shooting and dribbling drills soon followed. Yet all that rehab still hadn’t promised him anything. If his six-month evaluation in April showed any signs of bone deterioration, any signs of arthritis from the cartilage he lost, his Gamecock career would end on the spot, cut short in a drab hospital room. “It was very nerve wracking. It was frustrating, too, not knowing how it was going to be in the future,” Blanton said. The trauma surgeon checked out the X-rays. They looked great. “It’s amazing to me. Again, there’s no precedent. There’s nothing I can compare it to,” Rodger said. His rehab picked up after that. By the Gamecocks’ first summer session in June, he was cleared for live non-contact drills and

individual work with his teammates. By July, he was two months ahead of schedule. Head coach Frank Martin had to make sure he didn’t rush back too soon, lest his competitiveness unleash itself in reckless ways. Blanton remembers the moment he knew he was back. “I was dunking in a workout. That’s when I felt like my old self again,” he said, a smile stretched across his face. Martin admits they’re still figuring out how to manage his playing time moving forward. He may look fine for two days of practice, then feel stiff on the third. Coaches and athletic trainers remind him constantly that it’s okay to take a day off – nobody will think less of him for it. On the court, he still has plenty of rust to shake off – a player can only absorb so much on a whiteboard without experiencing it first-hand. The biggest key, Rodger says, is regaining the trust and confidence in his hip, knowing it can handle the strain put on it. Blanton insists he won’t think about the injury when he’s on the court. He had his 12-month check-up two weeks ago, and the X-rays continue to look great. If a patient shows no sign of tissue damage two years after his hip subluxation, his long-term health prospects generally look good. Blanton may not have the same vertical or explosiveness – in truth, he may never regain it in full - but his shooting touch remains kissable soft. A redshirt freshman, he’s eager to show off the form that made him a three-star prospect at Luella High School, averaging 20 points and 8 rebounds per game as a senior. Blanton is a thoughtful man, with a deep, intoning voice, pausing after sentences to consider how to express himself. The next milestone in his recovery came Sunday at Colonial Life Arena. As exhibitions go, it was anything but a throwaway. Before the game, he’s asked to consider the last 12 months – the severity, the uncertainty, the perseverance – and explain how he’ll feel when he takes the floor for real. Blanton shakes his head, his eyes glinting. “I’m going to be excited,” he replied. “I know I’m going to be nervous. But it’s the game of basketball.”

Spurs & Feathers • 27

November 11, 2015

Former AD talks about improvements, coaching search and Staley

by kyle heck Reporter

credit where credit is due and she stepped forward many, many years ago when it was hard to comprehend what kind of impact it Even though he no longer works at South was going to have on the whole WilliamsCarolina, former Athletics Director Eric Brice. (South Carolina Chief Operating OfHyman still keeps up with everything goficer) Kevin O’Connell sent me pictures and ing on in Gamecock Country. After being it’s downright beautiful. I’m very proud for with South Carolina for seven years, he likes South Carolina.” seeing the continued improvements that he Hyman is also obviously familiar with helped get started. South Carolina’s search for a new football Now the current Athletics Director at Tex- coach after the mid-season retirement of as A&M, Hyman took some time to talk to Steve Spurrier. Hyman said he’s been asked local media before his Aggies took on South about current South Carolina Athletics DiCarolina at Kyle Field in College Station, rector Ray Tanner’s ability to find a suitable Texas. His last contact with the University coach and in his opinion, Gamecock fans actually came just a few weeks ago when shouldn’t be worried. he sent a thank-you note to a pivotal booster “Ray has hired coaches before. It’s not who paved the way for the beautification like you have somebody that’s never hired project outside of Williams-Brice Stadium. a coach before,” Hyman said. “He knows it, “Tami Springs Brooks, she had made a he understands it and he understands how huge commitment back when I was there it works and what it takes so there will be and I wrote her a thank-you note probably so much carryover because of some of that three or four weeks ago,” Hyman said. past experience that he’ll put South Carolina “Tami was the one that planted the seeds for in a position where they can have the most it. Obviously I don’t work there anymore, amount of success they can have. The combut I wrote her and I said on behalf of South mitment that South Carolina has made from Carolina, everybody thanks you because a facility and some of the other things, the it was your gift that got everything jumpsincere commitment they’ve made over the started to where it is today. You have to give years makes South Carolina such a better

opportunity than it was when Steve first took the job and that’s a credit to the Gamecocks, that’s a credit to the South Carolina family to position themselves.” There are several head coaches still at South Carolina that Hyman hired, but the most prevalent of those would probably be women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley. Hyman hired Staley away from Temple in May of 2008 and seven years later, the Gamecocks are coming off of their first-ever trip to the NCAA Final Four and have established themselves as a consistent threat in the SEC and country. While there were some questions at the time of Staley’s hiring about how much she was getting paid, Hyman said he was confident that Staley would be the right choice. “Dawn has it,” Hyman said simply. “We had done some research on her, but one of the biggest things that sold me was she carried the American flag for the Olympic team. That to me - I’ve been in athletics a long time - that’s as high a honor as you can get.” Hyman recalled a trip to Philadelphia where he went around the city with Staley as she showed him Temple, where she grew up and where she played basketball. That

south carolina athletics media relations

experience showed Hyman something that still holds true today - Staley has an uncanny ability to connect with the community. “The people in Philadelphia loved her,” Hyman said. “We went all over the city and people loved her, just loved her like I’ve never seen before. Well those things sold me.”

Fairfield County Gamecock Club full of loyal fans by kyle heck Reporter

his chance to make an impression after the retirement of Steve Spurrier. Elliott is from Camden, which is another While the Fairfield County Gamecock small town outside the suburbs of Columbia, Club is one of the smaller chapters around just like Winnsboro, the home of the Fairthe state, that doesn’t mean that they don’t field County Gamecock Club. love South Carolina athletics just as much as “I love to watch him on the field with the the next person. guys,” Jan said, noting the excitement and Chapter president Gene Schofield and his enthusiasm that Elliott shows on the field wife, Jan, help run the club and do all they prior to the games. can to help the University and their sponThey are hoping that Elliott can do enough sored sport, track and field. to be named the permanent coach, but if Whether it’s raffling off an autographed not, they believe that the awesome facilifootball or helping to raise money for the ties at South Carolina and the fantastic fan signage on Williams-Brice Stadium, the base will attract a coach who can bring the members of the Fairfield County Gamecock Gamecocks back to the national spotlight. Club try and make as big an impact as they With basketball season about to start up, can. the club is also excited to head out to CoAt some point this year, the club is hoplonial Life Arena to watch both the men’s ing to make another donation to the track and women’s teams play. Then before you and field team. In the meantime, their time know it, baseball season will return and has been consumed by the football season that is something that the people in Fairfield and they have particularly enjoyed watchCounty really look forward to. ing interim head coach Shawn Elliott get “We know how to tailgate,” Jan noted.

“We’re there early and stay late.” They are also longtime supporters of the University and plan on sticking around no matter what kind of success the athletic teams are having. “We’re a small club, but we have loyal fans,” said Chris Blackwelder, another member of the Fairfield County Gamecock Club.

Their dedication to the Gamecock Club and the University is just as strong and they look forward to doing all they can to help out. “It’s the same small group that has just continued to work for the betterment of the Gamecock Club and Fairfield County,” Gene said. “As long as we’re living, that will continue. We’ll be here as long as we can.”

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South Carolina, Clemson kick off Palmetto Series Food Drive to benefit Harvest Hope south carolina athletics media relations The University of South Carolina and Clemson University recently launched the Certified SC Grown Palmetto Series Food Drive in a coordinated effort to benefit Harvest Hope Food Bank and tackle hunger within their communities. The winner of this match-up will be announced at the Clemson vs. Carolina football game on November 28. The University that raises the most donations in non-perishable foods by November 23 will earn a point for their school towards the 2015-16 Certified SC Grown Palmetto Series standings. Collected food donations between the two schools will be measured in pounds, and money donated will be converted to a number of pounds via an equation used by Harvest Hope. “Harvest Hope is excited that the CarolinaCan/ClemsonCan Food Drive is part of the Palmetto Series this year.” said Denise Holland, CEO, Harvest Hope Food Bank. “What makes a great rivalry is competition and passion. The one thing that the Palmetto Series CarolinaCan/ClemsonCan Food Drive is going to do is give us a place we can agree. That is that sports fans are helping so many people in need who are suffering with hunger issues on a daily basis. We look forward to seeing this fun rivalry unfold and in the end will be another great story on how the citizens of South Carolina have come together for a greater cause.” In South Carolina, one in six South Carolina families struggles to find where the next meal will come from, and one in four children will go to bed hungry every night. By participating in the Palmetto Series Food Drive this month, Gamecock and Clemson fans alike will come together to fight the statewide battle of food insecurities and support Harvest Hope. “At USC and Clemson, many students do not know what it feels like to go to bed hungry and this is the case for many families in To participate in the food drive, the Midour South Carolina community,” said Game- lands community is invited to visit any of the cock Beach Volleyball Player and USC Stuon-campus collection points including: dent-Athlete Advisory President Litsa Darby. • Greek Village “By working with my peers on campus, our • Thomas Cooper Library great athletic department at The University of • Athletic Village - Dodie and Rice South Carolina and the Harvest Hope Food • Gamecock BI-LO (Garners Ferry) Bank, together we can make a difference. • 650 Lincoln With every donation we raise awareness and • Quads - South Quad/ East Quad we provide meals to those in need. I am very • South Tower excited for this opportunity to combine the • Shuttle in front of the Horseshoe (College efforts of both schools because every can and Sumter St. Intersection) counts.” o Drop off at Journalism School if raining

photo by allen sharpe

• Pendleton Street Bridge • Blatt PE Center and Strom Wellness Center • Russell House In addition, there will be on-site collection opportunities 4.5 hours before kick-off at the Gamecock Village, located at the intersection of Bluff Road and National Guard Road: • 11/14 vs. Florida • 11/21 vs. The Citadel Fans can also visit Fans can also visit www. and click ‘EVENTS’ for more program details and/or to donate online.

“South Carolina’s farmers have dedicated their lives to feeding people,” said Commissioner Hugh Weathers. “We work every day to help grow healthy food for families across the state and beyond. We’re honored to help fight the hunger issues across South Carolina and help put food on the tables of our neighbors in need.” To learn more about the Palmetto Series and/or the Food Drive, visit You can also connect online with the Palmetto Series on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Every Gamecock fan should be proud of Thornwell During my career in the media industry, I have had the opportunity to cover different aspects of sports such as team oriented ventures like South Carolina as well as the recruiting side of the industry. During my time working for ESPN and 247Sports as a recruiting reporter, I had the chance to meet several quality young men. I would get to know them on a personal level, get to know their family, the background behind them and follow their journey. Current Bill Gunter Gamecocks junior Contributing basketball player Writer Sindarius Thornwell is one of those players that I got to know very early on and developed a strong relationship with. The first time I heard of Thornwell was sitting in an AAU gym during the summer. Thornwell walked by and a then Gamecocks assistant pointed to him and said he would be the next big thing to come out of the Palmetto State. At that time, Thornwell was just a rising eighth grader but he certainly passed the eye ball test as a long lanky player that would likely grow more and

put on weight. football players or baseball players that helped As I took the time to watch Thornwell play and build those respective programs and put their develop, it was easy to see why that particular as- team on a pedestal above themselves. As Martin sistant was so high on the Lancaster native at an turns the Gamecock program into a winner, early age. Of course, we all know Thornwell the there is without a doubt that Thornwell should basketball product but I got to know him as more be recognized as the face of the program and than just a basketball prospect. He was a young again, not just because of his basketball skill but man, learning his way in the world and develop- because of the man he has become. ing a personality and sense of himself. Too often in sports media we tend to focus on I say all that to say this, Sindarius Thornwell the negative story - the player that gets busted is a unique individual that every Gamecock fan for marijuana or stopped for driving while inshould be proud of. Not because he is a very toxicated. Often we overlook the good stories good basketball player that chose Frank Marbecause they do not draw the page clicks or retin’s program in a time when Martin needed an sponse from the public that negativity does. That in-state player to show confidence in what was shouldn’t be the case and a player like Thornwell being built but also because of he represents his should be given more credit for his efforts off university, his state and his family. the basketball court and how he has represented Never have I seen the Gamecock junior turn himself. down a fan request for an autograph or picture. This coming season should be a good one for Really, I can’t say that I have ever seen ThornThornwell as he appears healthy after battling well without a smile and engagtendentious in his knee’s last seaing personality that wants to son. Two years in Scott Greenengage with fans and help grow awalt’s strength and conditioning the program. If you have ever program have helped build the attended a fan event and run into 6-foot-5 wing into a physical Thornwell he is more than willplayer capable of handling the ing to talk about the program, nightly punishment that the SEC other players and even if he does likes to give out. not know you, will try to engage There is another reason that I All Gamecock basketball think Thornwell will have a solid you in how your family is. coverage sponsored by upcoming year. You may or may Gamecock fans always give Yesterdays credit to the outgoing, personable not be aware that earlier this year,

Thornwell lost a key element in his life when his Uncle, Dajuan Thornwell, passed away. Through my job as a recruiting analyst, I was able to get to know Dajuan and the Thornwell family and could see where Sindarius developed his sense of confidence and maturity. Heading into this season, I am sure that Thornwell will continue to represent his family and play the game in honor of his Uncle. That is the way he has always carried himself and there is little reason to expect him to be any different now. Sometimes we get caught up in the story of the players we like on the court or the field but take little time to find out who they are away from the public eye. There are good players and men out there and Sindarius Thornwell is one of them. As you watch Thornwell this season, be proud of how he performs but more importantly of the man he has become and how he has represents his team, the University and his family.

Since 2000 no matchup in the SEC has been closer in margin of victory: Tennessee versus South Carolina has been decided by 7.8 points. In the last 13 UT-­SC meetings since 2002 the game has been within a touchdown in the forth quarter. Before the HBC’s departure this season, Spurrier spoke about the various rivalries Carolina has developed over the years, some worthy, some not. We all know the ire we have for the Upstate team in orange, but we have developed some SEC rivalries over the years against other apricot colored teams. It’s not just left to the “orange teams” of UF, TENN but also UGA,they all have become more than just confrence games for us. They’ve turned into battles for SEC East ownership, recruiting supremacy, and season-defining wins. With Spurrier on staff, the Gamecock hate rose year after year amongst these teams, most of that hate directed at Spurrier for past beatings. No doubt, when I played I had a disdain for UF and the coach that led them, Steve Spurrier. The air of cockiness he and his teams displayed made the teams I was on despise him. This contempt was cemented that faithful night my junior year during the infamous “blackout game” against UF. Long story short it was one of the better Gamecock teams we had at that point and was for sure our best chance to beat Florida that year, but in the

end the Spurrier-led team made our attempts seem laughable. When Spurrier joined the Gamecocks we took on a lot of rivalry baggage and welcomed the same dislike we would once be on the opposite end of. At that time we had no real evidence to prove a rivalry between Carolina and Florida or any other team in the SEC not from Kentucky or Tennessee. The Gamecocks led by the HBC became a rival for Langston Moore a lot of programs Contributing that once looked Writer at the Gamecocks as a homecoming game or a team to beat on the way to becoming bowl eligible. But how would this team and the teams across the field treat this game and other games with out our visor wearing “Darth Vader?” We cannot deny the impact coach Spurrier had on rivalries, but coaches come and go. The games are

Coaches come and go, administrations come and go, but the players that play in these games understand their play will either live in infamy or virtue when we all look back on these games. The pain and anguish the players displayed after the Tennessee game in the locker room was hard to watch without getting emotional first hand. But it’s that kind of “caring” that makes these wins and losses against your rival so meaningful. Couple that with our fans passion and support through this series answers the question posed “what makes a rival a rival?” As painful as this was to watch as a former participant now turned fan, I can’t wait for our match up with the “creamsicle orange Knoxville”crew next year. But we don’t have to wait too long our other “orange” rival will be traveling up from Florida next week fresh off of clinching the SEC East. That’s the good thing about having so many of these rivalries, you don’t have to wait long for the next matchup. Besides we’ve beat UF 3 of the last 4 years, including a big victory at their place last season. Finishing up this tumultuous year at home for the next 3 weeks will be very much welcomed. Having the opportunity to beat 2 of our most despised foes at home will make up for many “ups and downs” of the 2015 season. Don’t fret Gamecock Nation, it’s rivalry week again for the Gamecocks - Beat the Gators!!!!

photo by brian hand

It’s rivalry week again this week for the Gamecocks still on the schedule... The week leading up to the Tennessee matchup a question was proposed “is having SC as a rival good for the Vols?” My reaction was “of course it is...” I may be a little biased having played in this series before it became a “rivalry,” but there is no question this series turned rivalry isn’t only good for the Vols but for the Gamecocks and for our conference. Granted we had not made the previous thirty plus meetings as competitive since the beginning, but the game between this orange team has become something extra than just a late conference matchup. The stats prove that the play on the field has been competitive regardless of coaches or venues. Even with stats to back it up all the talking heads (pretty much anyone with an Internet connection) chose the Vols over the Gamecocks by 15 or more points. Our boys continue to show “it doesn’t matter what we think,” what matters is the play on the field once the ball is kicked off. If you watched the entire game Saturday night you understood this even in defeat by the way our players played and the disappointment that followed. This battle between Tennessee isn’t a rivalry built on geography or some old tale of one school stealing another’s mascot, it’s not even about a legendary coach. This rivalry is about pride and heart.

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South Carolina/Tennessee postgame notes and quotes south carolina athletics media relations

win the game. That’s what I want us to do.”

GENERAL NOTES • Tennessee defeated South Carolina, 27-24. The Gamecocks are now 3-6 overall and 1-6 in the SEC. Tennessee is 5-4 and 3-3 in league play. • Attendance was 101,253, the eighth largest crowd to watch South Carolina in action in school history. • The Gamecocks have nine players that have started all nine games this year: WR Pharoh Cooper, LT Brandon Shell, LG Mike Matulis, RG Will Sport, RT Mason Zandi, DT Gerald Dixon Jr., DE Marquavius Lewis, LB Skai Moore, FS Isaiah Johnson. • South Carolina’s 21 points in the third quarter were the most points in a quarter scored by the Gamecocks this season

South Carolina junior linebacker Skai Moore On adjusting after Tennessee’s opening touchdowns “We just started playing, really. Everyone started defending right, and tackling, and getting in the right assignment, and doing the right things.”

South Carolina junior linebacker Jonathan Walton On scoring his first collegiate touchdown (pictured) “It was live, especially at this place. It just felt great. It’s kind of hard to explain right now, I’m still soaking it in.”

Tennessee head coach Butch Jones On what South Carolina did to slow down Tennessee’s offense “They started a lot of movement up front, bringing the nickel a lot. And just being able to block movement, we were limited in some of the quarterback run packages. But I’m never going to apologize for winning. This is a hard-fought game. We’re playing a good football team, and I give South Carolina all the credit in the world. They’re on scholarship, they’re going to have success. We’re still building. I’m proud of our players. I’m proud of our program. But we need to start being positive around here, because we’ve got kids that are giving it their all every single day. These kids are giving everything that they have. We’ve got kids battling that I don’t talk about with injuries that are giving everything that they have. Our offensive line was gritty today. They kept going down and down and down, and they want to go back in. It’s my job to protect these young men and protect our program. We’re building something special here and I think we all need to realize that. I love y’all, I love Tennessee, but I want positivity because recruits want to be here, everybody wants to be here, and we’re going to build something special.”

OFFENSIVE NOTES • Senior offensive tackle Brandon Shell made his 45th career start, tying him for fourth all-time in school history with Travelle Wharton (2000-03), Ladi Ajiboye (2007-10) and Devin Taylor (2009-12). • Junior quarterback Perry Orth threw for a career-high three touchdowns this afternoon. Orth finished 20-for-39 for 233 passing yards as well. • Junior wide receiver Pharoh Cooper moved into 9th in the all-time career receptions list at South Carolina with 120 as well as a tie for ninth in all-time career receiving touchdowns with 15 in his career. He finished with four receptions for 47 yards as well as 5-yard touchdown reception. • Junior linebacker Jonathan Walton recorded his first career touchdown as he caught a 10-yard pass for a touchdown in the third quarter out of the backfield. • Senior tailback Brandon Wilds carried 20 times for 79 yards. He has 1,784 career yards and is 26 yards short of Rob DeBoer (1990-93) for 20th all-time in school history. DEFENSIVE NOTES • Senior spur T.J. Gurley was credited with the first forced fumble of his career in the first quarter. • Senior linebacker T.J. Holloman was South Carolina’s leading tackler with seven tackles for the contest and a fumble recovery.

photo by allen sharpe

couple, maybe a couple to give us a chance to come here and pull out the victory. Our football team did, our football team believed, our football team is getting better, our football team is hurting, just like it did last weekend. It’s a tough situation SPECIAL TEAM NOTES when you go and you do exactly what you want to do, you • Junior placekicker Elliott Fry’s 43-yard field goal in the sec- work as hard as you can work, and you lay it on the line and ond quarter was the 49th of his career and tied him with Ryan it comes right down and the last play certainly didn’t win or Succop (2005-08) for second all-time in school history. lose the ball game for us, but it rips you. That’s what sports is • Sean Kelly had six punts for 298 yards for an average of about, when you love something it should hurt. We’ve got a 49.7 yard per punt as well as 56-yard punt in the contest. Florida Gator team coming into our place. We’ve got a team that believes in one another, that hurts for one another right South Carolina interim head football coach Shawn Elliott now. We’ve got a coaching staff that believes in one another. Opening statement They got an interim head coach that couldn’t be more proud of “It’s not the way you want to come here and lose a ball game. a football team. We’re going to move and we’re going to conI can tell you that. It’s certainly not doing it that way. One of tinue to improve and we’re going to make the most of it. The those games where you look back and you reflect on the first ball’s going to bounce our way. We are going to have to make quarter and you saw some missed opportunities. We let the it, but we’re going to get it done.” game start really fast for them offensively and really slow for us offensively. Then we kind of settled in, from the second On what he said to Jerell Adams quarter on our defense played well, we started making plays “What do you say to a guy who lays it on the line? To lay it offensively. We always felt like we were in the game from on the line, you’re telling me. The guy is sitting there in tears that point on. We made some bonehead decisions in the first because it hurt him so bad. You just tell him you love him and quarter. Just some things I couldn’t really put my finger on. pick him up and you move forward. That’s why I grabbed him But man, what an effort by a great group of Gamecocks, that and said ‘You’re coming with me and were going down here to nobody gave a shot, not a man sitting in this room, maybe a sing.’ That’s all you can do, I don’t fault him. He was trying to

Category 1st Downs Total Yards Passing Rushing Penalties-Yards 3rd Down Conversions 4th Down Conversions Turnovers Time of Possession Passing Leaders South Carolina COM Orth 20 Tennessee COM Dobbs 20 Rushing Leaders South Carolina CAR Wilds 20 Orth 9 Tennessee CAR Hurd 23 Dobbs 13 Receiving Leaders South Carolina REC Cooper 4 Wilds 3 Tennessee REC Pearson 8 Smith 3

SC UT 23 19 385 408 233 255 152 153 6-40 6-47 6-17 9-18 1-2 1-1 1 3 32:21 27:39 ATT 39 ATT 34

YDS 233 YDS 255

TD 3 TD 2


YDS 79 42 YDS 90 35

AVG 4.0 4.7 AVG 3.9 2.7

TD 0 0 TD 0 0

LG 15 17 LG 20 10

YDS 47 19 YDS 121 42

AVG 11.8 6.3 AVG 15.1 14.0

TD 1 0 TD 1 0

LG 17 13 LG 37 15

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The Gamecocks have made strides over the last few weeks Being a fan of South Carolina football should come with a warning label. Something like caring whether the Gamecocks win or lose can be hazardous to your health. Just when you think there’s no way South Carolina can find another way to lose, along comes another cruel turn. In a season that is full of more than its share of disappoint, Saturday’s loss at Tennessee may be the hardest to take of all (so far). In a game that started once again with what can only be called pathetic defense, USC gave up 14 points before Tennessee had even broken a sweat. Certainly the only sweating the Carolina defense was doing was a cold one. The scoring was so easy visions of hanging 60 by the Vols danced in my head. Then something funny happened. For some reason, after spotting Tennessee two touchdowns, the Gamecocks started playing defense. It’s not like all of this was unexpected. Carolina had been making quarterbacks who hadn’t played much at all look tremendous. Last year, South Carolina had a coming out party for Joshua Dobbs while he led the incredible come from behind win for the Vols in overtime. Thus, with his experience and talent, it only made sense that if these other so-so quarterbacks can do it, Dobbs would light up the Gamecocks and on the first two drives it appeared to be inevitable. Dobbs did account for almost 300 yards of total offense, but that is actually not bad for a quarterback of his talent. South Carolina only allowed a field goal in the second quarter and trailed 17-3 at the half. The offense was anemic in the first half, but came to life after halftime and tied the game up on a dramatic fourth down play from seven yards out as Perry Orth hit Jerell Adams for the improbable touchdown and the game was tied at 17. a really good chance, to win on the road After trading touchdowns, the game was against a quality SEC opponent. Much less tied at 24 and the game went to the fourth the opportunity to turn the table and do to quarter. Once again, just like last week Tennessee what it had done to us the last against Texas A&M, South Carolina was two years. unable to score in the fourth quarter. TenWhat makes this worse than the other nessee added a field goal to losses is the fact that this rewin 27-24. ally was winnable. In the other The difference this week losses, USC had not really is Carolina’s last drive. With threatened at the end. Carolina time running out, Orth hit had the ball with a chance to Adams again and were well drive for tie or perhaps the within field goal range. Adams win but really didn’t get close. effort is to be commended, but Having the win snatched away you could see it coming. Hit just hurts. from behind, Adams fumbled In reflection, did anybody with 31 seconds remaining really believe four weeks ago, and that was the game. that this football team had any Ed Girardeau What started out as so imchance on the road against Contributing probable had become a reality. Texas A&M or Tennessee? I Editor The Gamecocks had a chance, know I held out hope, but the

photo by jenny dilworth

hand writing on the wall was indicating a situation where Carolina wouldn’t beat Vanderbilt much less these two teams away from Williams-Brice. This team has made some strides in the last four weeks. They don’t have a lot to show for it in terms of wins, but they are at least competitive, a far cry from what we saw against Georgia, Missouri, or LSU. The team that showed up Saturday in Knoxville, particularly in the last three quarters, can compete with anybody and particularly these last three games on the schedule. That may seem a little delusional when you consider that two of the teams are ranked in the Top 10, and the other is ranked in the FCS Top 25. The games are at home. Anybody who watched Florida slip by Vanderbilt saw that the Gators, though clinching the SEC East title, are beatable. The Citadel is a good

football team, but will be challenged to keep up. Certainly the Bulldogs will give USC their best shot and Carolina better be ready. The last game is really intriguing. Clemson will probably come in undefeated and ranked number one in the nation. That will be quite an opportunity, but there will be plenty of time to talk about that in the weeks ahead. No need to get too far ahead of ourselves. Florida represents enough of a challenge for this week. Close with three wins and go to a bowl. That sounds like a great way to end the season that to this point has been one low point after another. It won’t be easy. It starts next week. Here’s hoping that the team comes out and finally plays four quarters this week. In as season that threatens our health and sanity, a win would cure a lot that ails all of us.

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