User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto
Horses
Soccer
Boxing/MMA
More
Betting Tools

 
Gamecocks focused on LSU, not Georgia win

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Coach Steve Spurrier says No. 3 South Carolina has high goals for this season and several are much bigger than starting 6-0 or dominating Georgia.

Advertisement
The Gamecocks (6-0, 4-0 Southeastern Conference) moved to their highest ranking in 28 years - and into discussions about SEC and national titles - after their 35-7 victory over the Bulldogs this past Saturday.

South Carolina had one of the more complete performances of Spurrier's eight seasons. None of it, Spurrier reminded people Tuesday, will matter if the Gamecocks don't stay focused on their next challenge, playing at No. 9 LSU on Saturday night.

``We are getting some national attention,'' the coach said. ``That's what we all like, but it can turn south on you if you don't watch it.''

Spurrier knows that too well. South Carolina pulled off a stunning upset of then No. 1 Alabama, 35-21, in October of 2010. A game later, the Gamecocks blew an 18-point halftime lead to lose at Kentucky, 31-28.

Spurrier blames himself and his staff for not coaching very well after halftime.

``Our guys were ready to play, ready to play,'' he said. ``We had them up 28-10 and pooped around the second half.''

It's easy to lose focus when so many people are praising the Gamecocks, which is happening all around South Carolina's campus.

Safety D.J. Swearinger said a teacher asked him to the front of the room so his nearly 200 classmates could applaud him for South Carolina's Georgia win.

That's heady stuff for a team not used to big-time success. But Swearinger said neither his head, nor those of his teammates, will be turned by the attention.

Swearinger told the defensive players at Monday's practice they could not afford to dwell on last week's victory, not with an angry bunch of LSU Tigers ahead.

``We've got a bigger task at hand than Kentucky'' two years ago, Swearinger said.

LSU, the defending SEC champions, hope to rebound from its first loss of the season, 14-6, at No. 4 Florida last Saturday. Tigers coach Les Miles said the players want to quickly put the defeat behind and get back to winning.

``For the first time in a year and a half we are talking about regular-season loss,'' Miles said. ``And it is miserable for us.''

South Carolina has struggled, like many SEC teams, against LSU. The Gamecocks are 1-4-1 against the Tigers since joining the league in 1992, their only victory at Death Valley coming 18 years ago.

Chalk up another challenge, said South Carolina defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles. ``I feel like we've got something to prove on the road,'' he said.

Quarles and Swearinger are among South Carolina's upperclassmen who have kept a steady hand on the team through its rise this season, Spurrier said. The pair are also close friends and former Greenwood High teammates of start LSU defensive lineman Sam Montgomery.

Quarles said the two have talked this week, wishing each other good luck and looking forward to seeing each other in person.

``We've got a brotherly bond,'' Quarles said. ``It's going to be fun.''

Spurrier's sure having a good time, despite his calm, focused talk.

This week, he recalled going 3-0 against LSU while playing quarterback for Florida in the 1960s, joked how fortunate the Gamecocks will be to have star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney for three years before he's NFL eligible - ``At Kentucky (basketball), they get them only one year and they're happy,'' Spurrier said - and even got in a dig at state rival Clemson, which also has nicknamed its football stadium, Death Valley.

``Most of our guys have never been to Death Valley. That is the Death Valley, isn't it? Or is there another one?'' Spurrier cracked. ``There's two of them? That's right, there's two Death Valleys.''

Spurrier said his team's fast offensive start against Georgia - the Gamecocks led 21-0 with less than nine minutes gone in the game - put the Bulldogs on their heels and gave South Carolina's defense the chance to make plays. The Gamecocks' D kept Georgia off the scoreboard until a meaningless touchdown in the game's final two minutes.

``When one team gets hot, scores on the first two or three possessions, you got an excellent defense, it can happen,'' he said. ``But you don't ever plan for it. You plan for a down to the wire game being won in the fourth quarter.''

That's what Spurrier's expecting against LSU. He's working this week to make sure his team's prepared for that, too.

``We're just trying to guard against going south and that we're totally ready to play this week,'' Spurrier said.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
HEADLINES
News: Jackson remains Heisman 'chalk'
Edwards: Opening Line Report - Bowls
Nelson: 4th Quarter Covers - Week 14
Peppers shocked to be Heisman finalist
Alabama cleans up on All-SEC team
Oklahoma's Westbrook off to big stage
Stanford RB McCaffrey declares for NFL
Oregon coach Taggart credits Harbaugh
Beat-Navy mindset is everywhere at Army
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NCAAFB College Football Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NCAA FB Hot Streaks
5-2 Run, 10-5 G-Plays, +1,885 TY
11-5 L16, 34-12 Streak, +1,841 TY
3-0 Saturday, 7-1 L8, 12-3 L15
8-1 Win Streak, 14-5 L19 Totals
4-1 Picks, 13-3 G-Plays, +1,653 TY
18-6 L5 Saturdays, 59% +1,543 TY
14-3 Last 17 G-Play Streak
+2,757 NCAA FB Over/Unders TY
7-3 L10 Picks, 13-4 L17 G-Plays
39-14 L5 Saturdays, 48-24 Streak
19-9 L4 Saturdays, 30-16 L46 Run
8-4 Sat., 19-7 GPlays, +2,353 Totals
28-14 L6 Saturdays, 31-15 Streak
14-6 CFB Record L20 Picks
9-4 L13 CFB Guarantees
4-0 Saturday, 7-1 L8, +1,036 TY
4-2 Saturday, 11-4 G-Plays TY
3-0 Week 14 Record
4-1 L5 Guaranteed Plays
11-4 L15 G-Plays, 17-9 L26 Picks
NCAA FB College Football Expert Sports Picks - Army Black Knights vs. Navy Midshipman
2016 CFB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Pat Hawkins + 1885
Joe Williams + 1841
Kyle Hunter + 1653
Last Week's Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 400
Michael Black + 400
Paul Bovi + 300
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Scott Rickenbach 59 %
Pat Hawkins 58 %
Kyle Hunter 58 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Micah Roberts + 984
Marc Lawrence + 917
Kyle Hunter + 740
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
NeiltheGreek + 2757
Micah Roberts + 2353
Kyle Hunter + 2001
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Pat Hawkins + 605
Vince Akins + 605
Scott Rickenbach + 557
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership