Entering Saturday’s game against Georgia, only one team in the SEC had given up more sacks than South Carolina.
After Saturday’s game, that statistic looks obsolete. The Gamecocks’ offensive line allowed one sack (and that on a play coach Steve Spurrier blamed on the quarterback) and helped the Gamecocks average 6.4 yards per play.
“The pass protection was very good,” Spurrier said. “We didn’t do anything special for Georgia, called our protections, went and played.”
That was easier, Spurrier pointed out, because the Gamecocks threw three passes after taking a 21-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game. The Bulldogs have four defensive players who could be first round NFL draft picks next year, including pass rushers Jarvis Jones and John Jenkins.
“I watched Brandon Shell,” Spurrier said. “Their No. 29 (Jones) had made some big plays against Missouri, but (Shell) blocked him. He pushed him past the quarterback. (Jones) is sort of a wide rusher, and (Shell) pushed him past several times. We didn’t have to do anything special as far as our protections to block the Georgia D-line.”
The Sunday morning injury report wasn’t as good as Spurrier had hoped. The Gamecocks announced no injuries immediately following the game, but Spurrier said Sunday afternoon that senior cornerback Akeem Auguste and senior defensive tackle Byron Jerideau both have sprained ankles.
“We will wait and see if they are going to be able to get back this week,” Spurrier said.
Auguste, the No. 6 Gamecocks third corner and nickel back, and Jerideau, a starter, each had two tackles against Georgia.
Sophomore tackle Mike Matulis missed his second straight game Saturday due to a shoulder injury.
Big play target
After Saturday night’s 14-yard touchdown catch, sophomore tight end Rory Anderson, called “Buster” by his coaches and teammates, has four scores and 158 yards on eight receptions this season.
“Buster has a knack of getting open and running with it,” Spurrier said. “It’s hard to focus on one guy when he only gets one pass a game or two.”
Anderson had eight catches for 188 yards and three touchdowns as a freshman. He is averaging 21.6 yards per catch for his career.
Spurrier and LSU coach Les Miles each have made a name for themselves by doing things their own way, and Spurrier admires that in the Tigers coach, he said.
“Yeah, I like Les,” Spurrier said. “We think a lot alike on a lot of things.”