Monday, October 12, 2009

UK Wildcats v USC Gamecocks Post-Game Reflections

I know I am a tad bit late on recapping the game as most beat writers and blogs beat us to it but this is a game that I need to sit on and think about.  Due to the fact - well, we were some what lucky to win.  Our defense did not play up to their potential versus UK.  For the second week in a row, our defense did not get a sack.  That will not help our cause this week vs 'Bama.  Thank god for a good display by our offense in mixing in the run and the pass.  Garcia did well - Over the last two games, Garcia is 29-of-42 passing (69.0 percent) for 365 yards and five touchdowns. His interception on Saturday was the first in 16 quarters. Nevertheless, he had a 189.01 quarterback rating against the Wildcats, his highest of the season.  Great play by Alshon but sore thumb on offense was our line play as it was not that great.  Oh and don't forget Chris Culliver who did a excellent job on special teams and put his offensive partners in good position.

I am certainly gald we won but know this week in practice has to be a great one.  The gamecocks have to play just about perfect vs Alabama come Saturday.  Our young team is going to have to step up big in front of a rowdy crowd.  Both sides of the ball have to bring their A+ game to the field and execute.  I will get to my preview later and keys later but know this...USC line play on both sides of the ball has to get better or it could be a long trip home from Alabama!

LOHD "Hot Dog Hero" of the game
WR Alshon Jeffery -- He caught seven passes for 138 yards and three touchdowns. Jeffery, a 6-foot-3, 217-pound freshman, had just 5 catches coming into the game, but seemed to develop some chemistry with Garcia due to some undersized corners.  For Jeffrey, the heralded true freshman from Saint Matthews, S.C., it was a coming-out party. His second touchdown was a thrilling, one-handed, over-the-shoulder ESPN highlight reel grab.  Jeffrey – LOHD fans will recall – was the subject of a Youtube 'Lane Kiffin Show' spoof after he chose the Gamecocks over the Vols......Something tells me pumping gas is not in this kids future.

Runner-up was RB Kenny Miles, who is emerging as the Gamecocks' top back. The redshirt freshman carried the ball 17 times for 100 yards against Kentucky. Fellow backs Jarvis Giles and Bryan Maddux had just three and two carries, respectively.

Chew on this....
From 2006-08, South Carolina is 15-5 in games played prior to October 15.  Add the 2009 totals to the mix and USC is 20-6.

Post October 15?  Over the last three years, the Gamecocks have posted a gaudy 6-12 mark in games played after October 15, and a 2-9 record over the past two seasons. I bring this up not to force you to slam your head against the nearby wall but to make a point that there is still tons of work to do for these 2009 gamecocks. They travel to Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa this week. Then the Gamecocks host Vanderbilt at 7pm on ESPNU, oh, and this is a Vandy team that has beaten SC twice in a row.From there they go on the road against Tennessee and Arkansas. Then back to Columbia to round out the season vs. No. 1 Florida and arch-rival Clemson.

Bartender, I will take another.....

3 Areas to Focus on in Practice from the LOHD Coaching Box
  • Line Play - must win some battles in the trenches, time to get angry boys and smack people around as Bama has big boys that will eat you up front on both sides of the ball
  • Spreading the ball amongst the recieving corp -  Bama knows Alshon and Alshon will not be able to go to the bathroom without a Bama player, let's just say he will be blanketed vs Bama. Somebody has to step up....paging Mr. Saunders and Mr. Barnes.....
  • Leadership Time to Step up --- Norwood and others it is time to rally the troops and get them pumped up for what is going to be a great game. UK and Ole Miss showed us some weak spots but the gamecocks must play a "complete game" for 60 mins.  I do not want to hear about young this or injuries....throw that out the window and man up!

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