COLUMBIA — Following the flooding that ravaged much of South Carolina and especially Columbia, University of South Carolina officials decided it would be best to move Saturday’s Gamecocks game against LSU elsewhere.
Moving a major college football game on short notice is no small task, and in the end it was decided that the Gamecocks and Tigers would face off in Baton Rouge, La.
While LSU’s Death Valley is one of the tougher venues to play in, things could still be worse. Not much, but they could be. USC had already decided to wear all white uniforms at home, and since they are still technically the “home” team, they will move forward with that plan.
It is worth noting that LSU fans believe their purple jerseys are cursed and, as such, have not worn them at home against an SEC foe since 1994.
Unfortunately, that was about all the good news for the Gamecocks this week. The bad news is they are about to face current Heisman Trophy front-runner Leonard Fournette. Fournette just established an SEC record, rushing for over 200 yards in his third consecutive game, a feat not accomplished by any of the great backs in SEC history.
This is coming just a few weeks after Georgia torched the Gamecocks for 246 yards on the ground. What’s worse is USC seems to have a habit of making opposing quarterbacks look like world beaters, which would only serve to open up the run game further for LSU.
With Brandon Wilds still out last week, the Gamecock offense struggles continued. It looks like Wilds will play against LSU, but his return doesn’t guarantee much. The USC offensive line, the perceived strength of the team in the preseason, has blocked about as well as ballerinas, leaving Perry Orth and Lorenzo Nunez to run for their lives.
It has been bad enough that David Williams hasn’t topped 3 yards per carry the last two games. With no downfield threat and only Nunez providing a rushing threat, opposing defenses have been able to take over games.
Things are looking bleak in Columbia right now, and the outlook is about the same for the Gamecocks. There is a lot of work ahead and there will be sacrifices that must be made, but everything will be ok. There is talent at USC, and there is support unlike anywhere else in football (who else could sell out their stadium every week in a 21-game losing streak?).
The Gamecocks will get back on their feet. It likely won’t be this year, and may not be next year either. But eventually USC will figure things out and that talent will play out.
Reach James Inabinet at 803-635-4016.