Thumbs up, thumbs down: USC-Vanderbilt

September 15, 2013 

Gamecocks running back Mike Davis breaks free for a big run after a catch in the first half Saturday night against Vanderbilt at Williams-Brice Stadium.

GERRY MELENDEZ — gmelendez@thestate.com

THUMBS UP

Bruce Ellington

The junior wide receiver finished with a career-high eight receptions for 111 yards and a 26-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter.

Tailback receptions

Mike Davis and Brandon Wilds make big contributions in the passing attack by turning short tosses into big gains. Davis caught three passes for 67 yards, while Wilds caught five passes for 65 yards and hauled in a 33-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter.

Connor Shaw

The senior quarterback completed 21-of-29 passes for 284 yards and three touchdowns and added another 89 yards on the ground.

Jimmy Legree

The senior cornerback made a huge fourth-quarter interception in the end zone to stop a comeback drive by the Commodores.

Dawn Staley

The USC women’s basketball coach was saluted at halftime with a ceremony recognizing her recent induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

THUMBS DOWN

Dylan Thompson’s pick

The South Carolina quarterback telegraphed a pass in the second quarter that led to Steven Clarke’s 69 interception return to the USC 1 to set up Vanderbilt’s first touchdown.

Hall of Fame ceremony

By trying to squeeze it in between the first and second quarter, the end of it had to be rushed as officials and television impatiently waited to start play again. Staging it at halftime would have allowed the time for eight inductees to be recognized properly.

Second half

After building a 18-point halftime lead, the Gamecocks weren’t particularly sharp on either side of the ball after intermission as they hung on for the victory.

Neil White

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