The South Carolina Gamecocks defeated the Kentucky Wildcats in a 54-3 romp Saturday night. The win moves USC to 5-1 (3-1) on the season and gets the good feelings going again in Columbia, S.C. This was the type win needed in Gamecock land.
USC’s offense was balanced and Kentucky could do nothing offensively due to South Carolina's sout defense. The Gamecocks got their revenge for the loss to UK in 2010 and moved their all-time record versus UK to 15-7-1.
There is a lot to cheer about if you are a Gamecocks fan, from Connor Shaw and Marcus Lattimore, to the play of the Gamecocks secondary.
Here are some quick impressions from this game:
---Shaw finished the game 26-for-39 for 311 yards passing and four touchdowns. And this was against a UK passing defense that ranked 11th in the NCAA coming into the game.
---Shaw will remain the starter.
---Melvin Ingram played but was limited. Glad to see him healthy as he is needed going forward to make the defense stronger.
---The Gamecocks forced six turnovers – four interceptions and two fumbles – while allowing 96 total yards.
---The Wildcats didn’t run a play in South Carolina territory after their first drive of the game.
---There was some talk of UK’s La’Rod King and the impact he could have but he was shut down by the Gamecocks. King had just one catch for eight yards.
---USC’s secondary had four interceptions on the day. They limited UK to just 17 yards passing. That is not an error - 17 yards. WOW.
---What made this a nice win besides the score was the smiles on the players' faces They were having fun out there.
Oh and Coach Spurrier still has it, so stop the needless replacement jibber-jabber. The Gamecocks finished with 639 yards of offense (351 passing, 288 rushing) and their wsa a lot of creativity showcased in the play-calling. The Gamecocks had 10 different players get a catch, Marcus Lattimore had 102 yards rushing and Alshon Jeffery had two touchdown catches. Needless to say, it was a very balanced attack. Even Spurrier was seen smiling. Rightfully so, mind you, as he executed a flea-flicker, used the “Wildcat” to his advantage, made the unorthodox Emory and Henry formation (lines up offensive linemen as wide receivers) look smart, and displayed some end-around runs.
Spurrier is now 18-1 as a head coach (Florida and South Carolina) against Kentucky. In those 19 games, Spurrier's teams have scored 40 or more points against UK 10 times and 50 or more six times.
The Gamecocks will now hit the road as they will play Mississippi State on Oct. 15 in Starkville, Miss., the first of three straight road games. For South Carolina fans, comfort has to be in their minds heading into cowbell country. The Gamecocks must continue to progress, though, as each week presents new challenges. That being said, getting a 51-point win against Kentucky is a welcomed sight.