South Carolina Football: Gamecock legends blast program

South Carolina football alum DJ Swearinger was critical of the program this weekend. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
South Carolina football alum DJ Swearinger was critical of the program this weekend. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports /

South Carolina football fans don’t want to think too much about this past Saturday’s game against Jacksonville State. Unlikely pass coverage hero Stone Blanton snatched a potential victory from the clutches of the “other” Gamecocks and returned it 88 yards for a touchdown to flip the game in the closing minutes.

It was not a day that many garnet and black-clad fans were happy about as the already-struggling Gamecocks almost lost an embarrassing game to a team that is in its first year of FBS competition.

The dissatisfaction doesn’t just sit with the fanbase, however.

Some former South Carolina football stars are not happy with their alma mater, and their complaints are just with the on-field product. The University of South Carolina honored the 2010-2013 Gamecocks on the field during halftime of the Jacksonville State game, and several big-name players from those teams were outspoken in their criticism of the event.

Among the loudest criticism came from the oft-outspoken DJ Swearinger, who was angry that he and his teammates weren’t honored during a more important game.

Legendary punt returner and wide receiver Ace Sanders was upset with the lack of promotion of the event, even going as far as to suggest that he and some other players didn’t “hear about this stuff.”

Cornerback Victor Hampton was upset with the South Carolina football program for scheduling the event for what was sure to be the lowest attendance of the season.

The most likely reason for the South Carolina football program choosing this past Saturday to honor the 2010-2013 Gamecocks was Steve Spurrier’s schedule; the Head Ball Coach is getting old and still likes to make a few appearances at Florida games each season, so the date was likely one of the only ones that worked for him.

However, the criticism from former players is valid. The four seasons from 2010 to 2013 was the best four-season stretch in program history, and each one of the four years slots somewhere in the top-10 for greatest seasons ever by a Gamecock football team (three of them are, without a doubt, in the top-5).

The players and coaches from those years deserved better than just some lightly-promoted halftime recognition during a poorly played game against Jacksonville State.

Some former players are also not happy with the on-field play of this year’s Gamecock team. Tim “Pops” Frisby played for both Lou Holtz and Steve Spurrier and is not satisfied with the effort Shane Beamer has gotten from his players.

The problems with how the program honors legends and how it plays on the field both need to change or the disgruntled former players and upset fanbase will get louder and louder with voicing their displeasure.

South Carolina football will have a chance to take a step in the right direction next week against the Vanderbilt Commodores when the Gamecocks go for their 4th win after a 12:00 SECNetwork kickoff.

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