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07-03-2011- Contenders

*FRONT PAGE ARTICLE*

In 2010, the Gamecocks won nine games for only the third time in school history. On the way to their nine wins, South Carolina beat Georgia, top-ranked Alabama, Tennessee, Florida in the Swamp, and Clemson.  In doing so, the Gamecocks earned a tremendous amount of respect. That respect is evident by looking at the multitude of preseason polls that have the Gamecocks listed in the top 20. 

Another reason for the high expectations is the amount of returning talent on this football team. Not only do big names like Marcus Lattimore, Alshon Jeffery, and Stephon Gilmore return. This team is loaded with quality depth, specifically on the devensive line.  Carolina's D-line should be among the best in the nation.

In looking at the schedule, the Gamecocks get the reigning National Champion Auburn Tigers in Columbia. Carolina will also host Florida and Clemson. On the road, games in Athens and Knoxville will be huge in deciding Carolina's SEC East fate. Split them and the game with Florida in Columbia will most likely be for the East.  Win both and the Gamecocks could possibly wrap up the East before the matchup with the Gators.

It seems the only question left for the Gamecocks is whether or not they can perform with the pressure of being the hunted.  Before this year, Carolina has been the perennial underdog going into the season since the Gamecocks joined the conference in 1992. This year will be different.  The Gamecocks will have a target on their back. Can they handle it?

07/03/2011- The SEC's Modern Era: 2000-present (REVISITED) 
 

In 2009 we posted the SEC records for the last ten years.  We revisit and update these records to include numbers from last season.  Take a look at the numbers below:

 

Overall Record Since 2000:

1) LSU (.769)

2) Florida (108-35) (.755)

3) Georgia (104-38) (.732)

4) Auburn (101-39) (.721)
5) Tennessee (89-51) (.635)
5) Alabama (89-51) (.635)

7) Arkansas (81-57) (.586)

8) South Carolina (77-59) (.566)

9) Ole Miss (67-66) (.503)
10) Kentucky (56-77) (.421)

11) Mississippi State (51-80) (.389)

12) Vanderbilt (36-93) (.279)

 

SEC Record Since 2000:

1) Florida (65-23) (.738)

2) LSU (61-27) (.693)

3) Auburn (60-28) (.681)

4) Georgia (58-30) (.659)

5) Tennessee (54-34) (.613)
6) Alabama (51-37) (.579)

7) Arkansas (43-45) (.488)

8) South Carolina (42-46) (.477)

9) Ole Miss (34-54) (.386)
10) Mississippi State (24-64) (.272)
11) Kentucky (22-66) (.250)
12) Vanderbilt (14-74) (.159)

 

**Records were compiled after the 2010 season

**SEC Records DO NOT include SEC Championship Game Appearances

07-03-2011- The Modern Era of USC Football (2000-present)
 
Two years ago, as 2009 came to a close, we compiled stats to take a closer look at just how successful Gamecock Football was in the decade (2000-2009).  We've decided to update some of those findings to include last year's 9-5 season:
 
By the Numbers
Overall Record: 77-53 (.592)
Conference Record: 42-46 (.477)
Winning Seasons: 8
Bowl Appearances: 6
Bowl Victories: 3
 
Elite Competition
Record Against AP Top 25 Teams: 17-34 (.333)
Record Against AP Top 10 Teams: 4-18 (.181)
Record Against AP Top 5 Teams: 2-10 (.200)
Record Against AP #1s: 1-1 (.500)
Played the Eventual National Champion: 7 times since 2000.  Carolina lost to LSU 7-33 in 2003, lost a 16-17 heartbreaker in the Swamp to Florida in 2006, lost a 16-28 battle to LSU in 2007, dropped a 6-56 decision to the Gators once again in the Swamp, and played tough in a 6-20 loss to Alabama in 2009. In 2010, Carolina played the eventual champ, Auburn, twice losing a 27-35 game in September and a 17-56 decision in Carolina's first ever SEC Championship Game Appearance.
 
Home Sweet Home
2000-2004-Holtz's Home Record: 22-11
2005-2010-Spurrier's Home Record: 29-13
Overall Home Record: 51-24 (.680)
 
Road Warriors
2000-2004-Holtz's Road Record: 7-10 (.411)
2005-2009: Spurrier's Road Record: 14-15 (.482)
Overall Road Record: 21-25 (.456)
 
Record Against Annual Foes
Against Kentucky: 10-1
Against Vanderbilt: 9-2
Against Arkansas: 4-7
Against Clemson: 4-7
Against Georgia: 4-7
Against Tennessee: 3-8
Against Florida: 2-9
 
All-Decade Team
OFFENSE
 
QB: Phil Petty (1997-2001)
RB: Marcus Lattimore (2010-present)
TE: Jared Cook (2006-2008)
WR: Sidney Rice (2004-2006)
WR: Kenny McKinley (2005-2008)
WR: Alshon Jeffery (2009-present)
OL: Travelle Wharton (2000-2003)
OL: Cedric Williams (1999-2002)
OL: Chris White (2002-2006)
OL: Na'Shan Goddard (2001-2005)
OL: Melvin Paige (1997-2001)
 
DEFENSE
 
DE: Cliff Matthews (2007-2010)
DT: Langston Moore (1999-2002)
DT: Cleveland Pinkney (1999-2002)
DE: Kalimba Edwards (1998-2001)
LB: Eric Norwood (2006-2009)
LB: Jasper Brinkley (2006-2008)
LB: Lance Laury (2001-2005)
CB: Sheldon Brown (1998-2001)
CB: Dunta Robinson (2000-2003)
S: Ko Simpson (2003-2005)
S: Emanuel Cook (2006-2008)
 
SPECIAL TEAMS:
K: Ryan Succop (2005-2008)
P: Spencer Lanning (2006-2009)
Specialist/Returner: Chris Culliver (2007-2010)
 
Biggest Victories
2010: Where do you start? Lattimore thrashes the Dawgs, Cocks End Bama's Streak, Spurrier Wins the East in the Swamp, or Beating Clemson Back to Back? All are good choices, however, dominating Florida in the Swamp 36-14 has to get the nod. Championships are few and far between at USC.
 
2009: South Carolina's 16-10 victory over the #4-ranked Ole Miss Rebels was huge.  The fourth-ranked Rebels became the highest ranked opponent ever defeated at Williams Brice Stadium.  Carolina's 34-17 win over #15 Clemson to close the regular season is a close second.
 
2008: In retrospect the 31-24 victory over the Ole Miss Rebels in Oxford a week after they upet #1 Florida in the Swamp was the biggest of the 2008 campaign.  The Rebels went on to finish with a 9-4 record and a top 25 ranking.
 
2007: The 16-12 win over eleventh-ranked Georgia Bulldogs in Athens turned out to be bigger than the home win over then-ranked #8 Kentucky.  The Bulldogs finished the season with only two losses and a top five ranking.
 
2006: In a season of near monumental upsets, Carolina's greatest victory came in Clemson.  The 31-28 victory over the #24-ranked Tigers was a big moment for Spurrier at Carolina.  The Gamecocks needed the win as they had suffered close losses to top 15-ranked teams all season long (a 16-17 loss to #6 Florida, a 20-26 loss to #12 Arkansas, a 24-31 loss to #8 Tennessee, a 17-24 loss to #2 Auburn).
 
2005: While winning in Knoxville was big, the 30-22 home victory over Spurrier's alma mater was without a doubt the biggest win of the season.  The victory over the the twelfth-ranked Florida Gators catipulted USC to a 2nd place finish in the SEC East and eliminated Florida's chance at winning the division.
 
2004: The 20-3 victory over the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa was the best of Carolina's six wins in 2004.  Anytime you win in Tuscaloosa, it's huge.
 
2003: The 31-7 victory over the fifteenth-ranked Virginia Cavs was a bright spot in an otherwise grim 2003 season.  In the win, the Gamecocks outgained Virginia 423-170.
 
2002: In a disappointing season, the good moments seemed few and far between.  South Carolina's 16-12 victory over Kentucky in Lexington is one of those good moments.  The Wildcats finished the season 7-5.  The 2002 Kentucky Wildcat football team is best known for coming up just short in the "Bluegrass Miracle" game against LSU.
 
2001: Choosing the biggest win from South Carolina's second most successful season in history was a difficult task.  Victories over Georgia, Clemson, and Alabama were all monumental, but the biggest win came in Tampa.  South Carolina's second consecutive Outback Bow victory over a ranked Ohio State team was huge.  The win was Carolina's ninth on the season.  It was the first time the Gamecocks had recorded nine wins in a season since 1984.  Defeating a national power for the second time in two years set the precident that Carolina had moved up a level since the 1990s.
 
2000: Wins over Arkansas and Mississippi State were big, but the biggest win of the season came in the SEC-opener.  Ending the twenty-one game losing streak in week one was huge, but the goaposts came down for the second consecutive week as South Carolina upset #9 Georgia 21-10.  Carolina intercepted Heisman Trophy Candidate Quincy Carter five times in rout to Carolina's first victory over a ranked team in eight years.  The win was Carolina's first conference win in eighteen tries.

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12-09-2010- The Quest for Ten
*FRONT PAGE ARTICLE*
 
Last weekend, the Gamecocks were in Atlanta trying to make history.  Unfortunately, South Carolina could only muster seventeen points in a 56-17 loss, and the dream of a SEC Football Championship was deferred, at least until next year.  On December 31st, the Gamecocks will get yet another chance to make history in the Georgia Dome.  South Carolina can achieve ten wins on the season for just the second time in school history.  The Gamecocks posted a 10-2 record in 1984.  A win over the Seminoles in the Chik-Fil-A Bowl would also guaruntee a top 20 ranking for the Gamecocks in the final poll.  The Gamecocks last finished the season ranked in 2001 after Lou Holtz's squad posted a 9-3 record.

There certainly is a lot left to play for.  With a loss, South Carolina would fall to 9-5.  Five losses would be disappointing with this squad.  While at USC, Spurrier hasn't had a season in which the team has lost fewer than five games.  The Gamecocks have lost their last two bowl games in rather embarrassing fashion.  Under Spurrier, South Carolina is just 1-3 in bowl games.  It's imperative that the Gamecocks turn that around this year.  And if making history isn't a good enough motivational factor for you, how about implications on the future? 

Even though tons of history can be made with a win on New Year's Eve in Atlanta, the Gamecocks must win this game because of the impact it can have on the future.  This South Carolina team will return Alshon, Stephen, and Marcus on offense in 2011.  The Gamecocks will also retain all but four starters on defense.  For the first time ever, South Carolina may be the favorite to win the SEC.  Therefore, it is neccessary that the Gamecocks close out the 2010 campaign with a bowl win.  This team needs something to build on.  A win in the bowl game would also help secure an already promising recruiting class.  

In 2010, the Gamecocks have already beaten Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida and Clemson.  All five of those schools are big name football schools.  All five have national championships within the last three decades.  The Gamecocks will get another chance to beat a big name school in Florida State come December 31st in Atlanta.  Let's see if the Gamecocks can close out 2010 in winning fashion. 

12-09-2010- Update from the Staff
 
After taking a year off from updating the site, we've decided to begin regularly updating Spurred again.  You'll notice some changes we've made. Thanks for visiting and GO COCKS!
 
~Staff

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