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Sunday, September 5, 2010

Spurrier on Georgia and "big game"

If you were looking for Steve Spurrier to be stoking the fires, you’ll be disappointed. The South Carolina head coach was in game week, respect-the-opponent mode on Sunday’s teleconference.

“It’s a big game. One of the biggest we’ve had here in awhile,” Spurrier said. “It should be an exciting day.”

The only slight was Spurrier referring to Georgia defensive coordinator “Lance” Grantham. Even that was forgivable: That's the name of South Carolina's director of ticket operations.

Either way, the Head Ball Coach was certainly impressed with Todd Grantham after watching the Louisiana-Lafayette game.

“I certainly respect what he’s done in one game,” Spurrier said. “I know he’s getting his defensive coordinator career started. But his team looked well-prepared and positioned to play, pretty much every snap except one.”

There were other kind words for Georgia:

- Georgia “had an excellent game on Saturday,” the coach said.

- Spurrier said Georgia “has maybe as good a pass rush as anybody in the country right now, the way it looked this past Saturday.”

- Bulldog punter Drew Butler is “maybe the best punter in the country.”

South Carolina has been dealing with NCAA issues, just like Georgia has with A.J. Green. The Gamecocks were without three key players: Tight end Weslye Saunders, cornerback Chris Culliver and tackle Jarriel King. Those guys haven't been cleared yet.

Spurrier saw that Georgia head coach Mark Richt has been strict about not commenting on the NCAA matters.

“I guess I’m like the Georgia coach, we’re not supposed to talk about it too much,” Spurrier said. “But we’ll do what the NCAA tells us to do with these players.”

A number of others in limbo were cleared just before the game, and Spurrier was hopeful they were good to go the rest of the way.

Asked if Green’s status would affect South Carolina’s approach, Spurrier demurred.

“But as we’ve learned, we probably won’t learn if he’s playing or not until Saturday morning,” Spurrier said of Green. “Or maybe Georgia may not know until then. Sometimes they don’t let us know until the last minute.”

Gamecock linebacker Shaq Wilson, the team’s leading tackler last year, missed the Southern Miss game with a hamstring injury and will “probably definitely” be out again. Antonio Allen, who starts as the Spur (hybrid safety-linebacker) has a chance to play.

Finally, in almost completely unrelated note, the coach was asked if, sitting back watching games on Saturday, any team impressed him.

“You mean other than Jacksonville State?” Spurrier replied.

Jacksonville State's nickname, in case you didn't know, is the Gamecocks.


Anonymous said...

What about the Whitney 5? Are we to assume this is just business as usual in Columbia and none of them will be suspended for this game?

Anonymous said...


Am re-watching the game. Thoughts through 1st half:

(1) No one is talking (today) about the great game Vance Cuff had yesterday. First, he single handedly saved a game-opening ULL kickoff return for TD that would definitely have affected the immediate tenor yesterday and our mood today (if not the ultimate outcome). Two, his coverage was terrific and he had a really nice breakup of a likely first down midway through the 1st Qtr..

(2) The running-into-the-kicker penalty should have been a no-call, as the ULL center was the guy who hit the punter (without really being pushed into him).

(3) The OL actually did better than I had first thought. Nice protection for Murray (who looks as poised as I had first thought), and, as said elsewhere, there were often 8 in the box for ULL. When there were 8 up front, the FBs did great; when ULL left its LBs back, Thomas and King broke a few nice runs.

(4) Carlton Thomas has come light years as a blocking RB. Now if he could just hold on to the football.

(5) I heart Todd Grantham. My God, a freshman.

Anonymous said...

Spurrier complimenting Georgia? Now, I'm REALLY worried!

Anonymous said...

Seriously, should be worried OBC is complimenting anyway in the entire state much less the UGA football team? Isn't this unprecedented?

Redcoat98 said...

It's almost as if Lou's back in town with the pregame flattery...