1. Game Ball: Connor Shaw… for Florida
The entire offense was putrid yesterday, but the fumble on the first play from scrimmage by Connor Shaw seemed to take all offensive life out of the team. If the cornerback coming on the sack was at his blind side, I would be willing to let this slide, but either he saw the guy and thought incorrectly he could side step him, or he somehow had no pocket awareness and just didn’t see him. When he did see him, he should have tucked the ball away. After that play, Connor continuously missed open receivers downfield. I’d like to think that his mental process went something like this: ”My first option is covered by three people, but my second option is wide open! First option it is!” Unfortunately, I don’t think he ever even looked at his second option. I’m not saying we would have won the game if not for Connor Shaw or that Dylan Thompson was a better option. I just think maybe people should hop off the Connor Shaw bandwagon, at least on the road.
2. What the hell was that?
I have never seen an offense look so confused. Whether it was Connor throwing the ball to empty space or Mike Davis and Ace Sanders running into each other just past the line of scrimmage. It didn’t seem to be that Florida was doing anything to stop us. The few times we were able to not be totally oblivious to what was supposed to be going on, the Gamecocks were able to move the football fairly well. The offensive line continued to give the quarterback enough time to at least throw the ball away. The run blocking was as good as you could expect against a stout Florida run defense. The skill positions just seemed lost the whole way through.
3. 23 yards for 21 points
Defensively, South Carolina seemed back to its old ways, especially in the first half. At halftime, the Gators had been held to only 23 yards. Unfortunately due to turnovers, Florida’s offense only needed a few yards for each of those touchdowns. In the second half, the defense only gave up another 160 yards. If you had told me our defense would hold Florida to only 183 yards for the game, I would have predicted a score of at least 21-3 in favor of the Gamecocks. If only the effort shown on defense had sparked something in the offense.
4. Final Thoughts
These past two weeks, the same Gamecocks that man-handled the then-#5 Georgia Bulldogs at Williams-Brice have simply looked lackluster. At best. There is no fire under this team, no drive to win. Playing in Death Valley and the Swamp in back to back weeks is an extremely difficult task, but I truly believed we would have at least split the games. I don’t think this 2012 team deserves a comparison to the 2007 collapse, but if these South Carolina Gamecocks continue to play without a sense of urgency, they could find themselves on the business end of a third consecutive loss by the hands of Tennessee. If that happens, who knows where this season could end up.