South Carolina football: Gamecocks open week as underdogs

Mon Denson #34 of the South Carolina Gamecocks. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Mon Denson #34 of the South Carolina Gamecocks. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /

The South Carolina football team will take on Florida in game two.

South Carolina landed right where Vegas predicted in week one with its 31-27 season opening loss to the Tennessee Volunteers. The Gamecocks’ odds had placed them anywhere from a three- to five-point underdog.

Now, they’ll have to travel to Gainesville for a week two matchup with the No. 3 Florida Gators in the Swamp. The Gamecocks will have their hands full with a Florida offense that hung 51 points on the Ole Miss Rebels in their first contest.

South Carolina opened up the week as 18 ½ point underdogs as they prepare for their first road meeting of the year.

Will Muschamp and Co. got the season off to a rocky start with the four-point loss in Williams-Brice Stadium. It was a game they felt could’ve gone their way had they cut down on mistakes. Despite breaking in a new quarterback, new playbook, struggling in the run game, and throwing a first half pick six, the Gamecocks battled back with a chance to take the lead late in the fourth quarter.

Unfortunately, following a final stand by the South Carolina defense, the special teams unit misplayed a punt with 1:30 left in the game. The Vols recovered, sealing the Gamecocks’ fate.

Florida, on the other hand, brought an experienced passer into Oxford and he had one of his best career games in a Gator uniform. Kyle Trask threw for more than 400 yards and six touchdowns as the Gators took down Ole Miss by a couple scores.

There are some question marks on defense, but some of that can be attributed to a Rebel offense that’s got playmakers at the skill positions, and a new play caller in Lane Kiffin.

Florida has taken four of its last five matchups with the Gamecocks, though South Carolina has kept it close in each. Last year’s meeting saw the Gators overcome a second half deficit by scoring 21 fourth quarter points to escape Williams-Brice Stadium with a 38-27 win.

In South Carolina’s last trip to the Swamp, they blew a 17-point second half lead to lose 35-31. Florida ran for 367 yards in the contest.

The Gamecocks will hope to change their fortunes versus the Gators next weekend. They’ll need to shore up the back end of their defense if they want to keep the score within the 18-point spread. Kickoff is set for noon with the game scheduled to air on ESPN.

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