Gamecocks football’s Deebo Samuel is gaining national headlines after scoring five touchdowns in two games, but how high is his ceiling?
Saturday night the Gamecocks traveled from Columbia, SC to Columbia, MO to take on the Missouri Tigers. Missouri was listed as a 2.5 point favorite against the Gamecocks despite South Carolina’s impressive Week 1 win over NC State. Early on, the Tigers backed it up. Missouri looked sharp, while the Gamecocks’ offense struggled to move the ball.
Then, Deebo happened.
Missouri’s kicker Tucker McCann booted his third kickoff of the game to the three yard line where Deebo Samuel was waiting to receive it. Samuel only had to break one tackle then he was home free. He returned the kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown for the second game in a row. On Missouri’s first play from scrimmage South Carolina defensive back Jamyest Williams intercepted a pass from Missouri’s Drew Lock. Then the very next play Deebo Samuel was handed the ball on a jet sweep that he took 25 yards for his second touchdown in 15 seconds.
The explosive playmaking of Deebo Samuel turned a 10-0 deficit into a 14-10 lead in less than 30 seconds of game time. Very few players in college football can turn a game around on his own like that, which puts Samuel into an elite category of playmakers. His play is already putting him in the conversation as a Heisman contender. During the broadcast Saturday night Mike Golic Jr., who was calling the game, brought up the idea of Samuel being a legitimate Heisman option. Then, after the game, both quarterback Jake Bentley and Coach Will Muschamp stated that they considered Samuel an early favorite in the Heisman race. After five touchdowns in two wins to start the season the nation has been put on notice that Deebo Samuel is the real deal.
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Samuel and the Gamecocks will look to keep their early success going Saturday night against Kentucky at Williams-Brice Stadium for the first home game of the year.