South Carolina Football Offseason Autopsy, Part 3: Offensive Superlatives

South Carolina football quarterback Spencer Rattler played about as well as he could considering the weather on Saturday. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports
South Carolina football quarterback Spencer Rattler played about as well as he could considering the weather on Saturday. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports /
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South Carolina football quarterback Spencer Rattler had a great season in 2023. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports /

South Carolina Football Offseason Autopsy Offensive Superlatives:
Offensive Most Valuable Player

Determining the Gamecocks’ offensive MVP is difficult. Two players stick out as quarterback Spencer Rattler and wide receiver Xavier Legette were, without a doubt, the best two players on that side of the football. The team agreed as the two players split the Steve Wadiak Team MVP Award at the postseason banquet.

However, working off of the traditional meaning of MVP (focusing on the word “valuable”), Spencer Rattler gets the edge.

Rattler was forced to play behind an offensive line that was decimated by injuries, and the guys who played struggled, as well. Because of that, #7 was running for his life on many of his dropbacks in 2023. The Gamecock offense provided very little help in the run game, as well (85.1 yards per game was 5th-worst nationally), piling even more pressure on Spencer Rattler.

Still, Rattler put up one of the best quarterback seasons in South Carolina football history.

Only two Gamecock quarterbacks (Steve Taneyhill and Dylan Thompson) have ever thrown for more yardage in a season than Rattler’s 3186, and both Taneyhill and Thompson had the benefit of playing in very balanced offenses.

Rattler set a new record for most 300-yard passing games in a season (5) and became just the second Carolina signal-caller to throw for 3000 yards in two seasons, joining Todd Ellis.

Rattler was also a tremendous leader for an offensive unit that could have folded under first-year coordinator Dowell Loggains (who was up-and-down this fall). He never blamed the offensive line or the injuries or the struggles of every receiver not named Xavier Legette. Instead, he was a consummate teammate.

Spencer Rattler was the 2023 Offensive MVP.