Practice report: Spurrier pays Fleetwood back for icy soaking

jkendall@thestate.comDecember 18, 2013 

Kyle Fleetwood

DWAYNE MCLEMORE — dmclemore@thestate.com

As South Carolina prepares to face Wisconsin in the Capital One Bowl on Jan. 1, Steve Spurrier has his mind on revenge.

Not on the Badgers. The Gamecocks never have played Wisconsin. Neither has Spurrier. It’s his players who are in Spurrier’s sights after freshman defensive back Kyle Fleetwood and junior defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles dumped a bucket of ice water on the coach after South Carolina’s 31-17 win against Clemson on Nov. 30.

“I got Fleetwood back today,” Spurrier said. “I got him pretty good. The players got a big kick out of that, too.”

Spurrier dumped a small bucket of ice water on Fleetwood while the player was watching a special teams drill during Wednesday’s practice, the coach said.

“I’ve got to get Kelcy Quarles. He’s next in line, but he’s watching me everywhere I go now so it’s going to be tough,” Spurrier said.

Fleetwood confirmed his dousing later in the day on Twitter.

“Talk about cold,” the player posted.

“The players realize it’s not all that funny to get hit with one of those things. Have y’all ever been hit with one?” Spurrier asked reporters. “If you’re expecting, you can get your Gore-Tex on (and say), ‘All right, hit me.’ The other day, it came all the way down the visor and the hat. It took a while to get out.”

Asked if he would coach his players on the proper way to perform a celebratory soaking, Spurrier indicated some coaches do just that.

“You notice some coaches say, ‘You can hit me on the back but don’t hit my hair.’? There are some of those out there,” he said. “You have probably seen those guys that don’t get hit in the hair.”

Spurrier also recounted a story Wednesday about the 1962 Gator Bowl in which 6-4 Florida upset 9-1 Penn State 17-7. Duke declined an invitation to the game to open up the spot for the Gators.

“The Duke players, a lot of them went to Coach (Bill) Murray and said, ‘Coach are we going to hit and scrimmage and beat each other up for three weeks prior to the game or can we get a little time off and not really clobber each other?’ He got mad at them and said, ‘I’ll tell you what we’ll do, we just won’t go to a bowl game, how about that?’ So he called the Gator Bowl and said ‘We ain’t coming,’ ” Spurrier said. “I watched the game on TV and the Florida Gators were all fired up, and I said, ‘Maybe that would be a good place to go to school.’ The decision of Duke not to play in the Gator Bowl sort of helped me go there and find my wife and get started.

“That’s the way life is.”

Clowney’s car

Spurrier has not spoken to defensive end Jadeveon Clowney about the ticket Clowney received last week for going 110 mph in Fairfield County.

“I didn’t know that car of his would go 110,” Spurrier said. “He does not have a brand new BMW or anything fancy. But on Jan. 2, he will have enough money to pay the speeding ticket, that’s for sure.”

Increasing importance

Bowl games matter more now than they did when Spurrier began his coaching career, Spurrier said.

“I told the players today, ‘This is the game we will talk about for eight months, so this is a huge game,’ ” Spurrier said. “Somebody told me there wasn’t a single person in China who had ever heard of Jadeveon Clowney. Now they all know who he is after that hit (in last year’s Outback Bowl). If we can do something special, the replays will go on for eight months, so it’s a huge game Bowl games are huge. They really are.”

JUCO signs

Junior college defensive tackle Abu Lamin signed a national letter of intent with USC on Wednesday.

Lamin is a 6-foot-5, 310-pounder from Fort Scott (Kan.) Community College. He had 34 tackles with 7.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks in nine games. Lamin is from Trinity Christian School in Fayetteville, N.C., graduating in 2011. He redshirted in his first season at FSCC.

Lamin is a four-star, the No. 18 junior college prospect in the country and the No. 6 JUCO defensive tackle, according to 247Sports.com.

He selected USC over offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Nebraska and Tennessee, among others.

Freshman honored

Linebacker T.J. Holloman was named to the third-team Freshman All-America squad by Athlon Sports.

Holloman, a 6-2, 228-pound redshirt freshman from Stone Mountain, Ga., played in all 12 games, making three starts. He had 43 tackles, including 27 solo stops. He was credited with 4.0 tackles for loss, one quarterback sack and tied for the team lead with three interceptions.

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