South Carolina Football: Ranking the top Gamecock head coaches of all-time

A list of the greatest head coaches in the history of the South Carolina football program

Legendary coach Lou Holtz coached several stout defenses during his time in Columbia.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Paul Chapman-USA TODAY Sports(©) Copyright 2004 by Paul Chapman
Legendary coach Lou Holtz coached several stout defenses during his time in Columbia.Mandatory Credit: Photo by Paul Chapman-USA TODAY Sports(©) Copyright 2004 by Paul Chapman /
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South Carolina football fans understand that the history of the program is, while long, not as filled with winning as they would hope. That is why when the Gamecocks have experienced sustained success in the past, it has stood out.

Any football fan gets that a team’s on-field success is decided by many factors. The leading contributor to winning is the players, but arguably the second-most important factor in experiencing success (especially sustained success) is coaching.

In the history of South Carolina football, a handful of head coaches have shone brighter than the rest. But which of these headmen were the best leaders of the South Carolina football program?

Honorable Mention

Shane Beamer: Shane Beamer (2021-Present) is the current head coach for South Carolina football, and the program is trending upwards. A dip in wins in 2023 threatens the progress of the Gamecocks moving forward, but a bounce-back in 2024 will lock Beamer into some job security that will go a long way in moving USC forward even more.

NB Edgerton: NB Edgerton (1912-1915) went his entire four-year career without a losing season. That’s got to count for something, right?

Billy Laval: Billy Laval (1928-1934) went his entire seven-year career without a losing season. That’s also got to count for something, right? In fact, Laval had a winning record each year of his 6-year tenure with the team. He also went 17-2 as the head basketball coach in the 1932-1933 season.