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East Carolina vs. South Carolina: Complete Week 2 Game Preview

Alex RobertsCorrespondent IOctober 19, 2016

East Carolina vs. South Carolina: Complete Week 2 Game Preview

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    Round 2 for the South Carolina Gamecocks brings a familiar foe to Columbia: last year's opener opponent, East Carolina

    Who: East Carolina at South Carolina

    When: 12:21 p.m.

    Where: Columbia, S.C.

    Stadium: Williams Brice Stadium (80,250)

    TV: SEC Network

    Radio: 107.5 "The Game"

    Internet Stream: University of South Carolina Athletic Site, ESPN 3

Depth Chart for South Carolina

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    Offense

    Quarterbacks:

    1. Connor Shaw

    2. Dylan Thompson

    3. Seth Strickland

     

    Running Backs:

    1. Marcus Lattimore

    2. Kenny Miles

    3. Mike Davis

     

    Fullback:

    1. Qua Gilchrist

    2. Connor McLaurin

     

    Wide Receiver 1:

    1. Ace Sanders

    2. DeAngelo Smith

    3. Shaq Roland

     

    Wide Receiver 2:

    1. D.L. Moore

    2. Nick Jones

    2b. K.J. Brent

     

    Wide Receiver 3 (Slot):

    1. Bruce Ellington

    2. Damiere Byrd

     

    Tight End 1:

    1. Justice Cunningham

    2. Jerell Adams

     

    Tight End 2:

    1. Rory Anderson

    2. Kelvin Rainey

     

    Left Tackle:

    1. Brandon Shell

    2. Corey Robinson

     

    Left Guard:

    1. A.J. Cann

    2. Will Sport

     

    Center:

    1. T.J. Johnson

    2. Kyle Harris

    3. Travis Ford

     

    Right Guard:

    1. Ronald Patrick

    2. Kaleb Broome

     

    Right Tackle:

    1. Mike Matulis

    2. Cody Gibson

     

    Defense

    Left Defensive End:

    1. Devin Taylor

    2. Chaz Sutton

     

    Right Defensive End

    1. Jadeveon Clowney

    2. Aldrick Fordham

    3. Gerald Dixon

     

    Defensive Tackle 1:

    1. Byron Jerideau

    2. Philip Dukes

     

    Defensive Tackle 2:

    1. Kelcy Quarles

    2. Gerald Dixon Jr.

     

    Middle Linerbacker:

    1. Reginald Bowens

    2.  Damario Jeffery

     

    Weak-Side Linebacker:

    1.  Shaq Wilson

    2. Quin Smith

    3. Cedrick Cooper

     

    Spur:

    1. DeVonte Holloman

    2. Jordan Diggs

     

    Corner 1:

    1. Victor Hampton

    2. Ahmad Christian

     

    Corner 2:

    1. Jimmy Legree

    2. T.J. Gurley

     

    Strong Safety:

    1. Brison Williams

    2. Kadetrix Marcus

     

    Free Safety:

    1. D.J. Swearinger

    2. Jared Shaw

     

    Special Teams

    Kickoff Specialist:

    1. Landon Ard

    2. Adam Yates

     

    Placekicker:

    1. Adam Yates

    2. Landon Ard

     

    Punter:

    1. Tyler Hull

    2a. Patrick Fish

    2b. Mike Williamson

     

    Kick Returner:

    1. Bruce Ellington

    2. Damiere Byrd

     

    Punt Returner:

    1. Ace Sanders

Depth Chart for East Carolina

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    Offense

    Quarterbacks:

    1. Rio Johnson

    2. Shane Carden

    3. Brad Wornick

     

    Running Backs:

    1. Michael Dobson

    2. Reggie Bullock

    3. Vintavious Cooper

     

    Wide Receiver 1:

    1. Reese Wiggins

    2. Jabril Solomon

     

    Wide Receiver 2:

    1.  Andrew Bodenheimer

    2. Lance Ray

     

    Wide Receiver 3:

    1. Justin Hardy

    2. Justin Jones

     

    Wide Receiver 4:

    1. Derrick Harris

    2. Cedric Thompson

     

    Left Tackle:

    1. Adhem Elsawi

    2. Isaac Harris

     

    Left Guard:

    1. Jordan Davis

    2. Drew Gentry 

     

    Center:

    1. Taylor Hudson

    2. C.J. Struyk

    3. Josh Clark

     

    Right Guard:

    1. Will Simmons

    2. Drew Gentry

     

    Right Tackle:

    1. Robert Jones

    2. Grant Harner 

     

    Defense

    Left Defensive End:

    1. Lee Peques

    2. Chrishon Rose

    3. Jonathan White

     

    Nose Tackle:

    1. Michael Brooks

    2. Terrell Stanley

     

    Right Defensive End:

    1. Matt Milner

    2. Justin Dixon

    3. John Lattimore

     

    Linebacker 1:

    1. Derrell Johnson

    2. Chris Baker

    3. Jake Geary

     

    Linebacker 2:

    1.  Maurice Falls

    2. Montese Overton

    3. Gabriel Woullard

     

    Linebacker 3: 

    1. Jeremy Grove

    2. Ty Holmes

    3. Zeek Bigger

     

    Linebacker 4:

    1. Kyle Tudor

    2. Daniel Drake

    3. Brandon Williams

     

    Corner 1:

    1. Jacobi Jenkins

    2. Rocco Scarfone

    3. Joshua Harkins

     

    Corner 2:

    1. Adonis Armstrong

    2. Kristopher Sykes

     

    Safety 1:

    1. Lamar Ivey

    2. Chip Thompson

     

    Free Safety:

    1. Damon Magazu

    2. Justin Venable

    3. Desi Brown

     

    Special Teams

    Kickoff Specialist:

    1. Trent Tignor

     

    Placekicker:

    1. Warren Harvey

    2. Connor Torruella

     

    Punter:

    1. Trent Tignor

    2. Brendan Rowland

    3. Phil McNaughton

     

    Kick Returner:

    1. Derrick Harris

    2. Lance Ray

    3. Hunter Furr

    4. Vintavious Cooper

     

    Punt Returner:

    1. Justin Hardy

    2. Derrick Harris

What Happened to the Gamecocks Last Week

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    Last week, the Gamecocks played the Vanderbilt Commodores to open up the college football season Aug. 30 on ESPN. The Gamecocks had to fight and claw, but they left Nashville with a hard-earned victory over a good SEC team. 

    The big news from the game was Connor Shaw's shoulder injury. If he isn't 100 percent, the Gamecocks aren't nearly as dangerous. 

What Happened to the Pirates Last Week

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    After being down 7-0 and only up 14-13 against the FCS Appalachian State Mountaineers (albeit a very good school in that division), the Pirates blew them out with a 21-point explosion at the end of the game. 

    It really wasn't an impressive victory for the Pirates, who will need to do much better to compete with the Gamecocks. 

What It Means to Both Teams

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    South Carolina needs an impressive win to shut up the critics. Apparently, blowing out a lower-level team is better than beating a good team on the road, for whatever reason. 

    If the Gamecocks squeak out another win, regardless of who plays quarterback, look for the critics to really bring the heat. Shaw would love nothing more than to play this week and perform better than he did last year against the same team.

    ECU would love nothing more than to announce that it is a good team and a capable Conference USA winner. This would be a huge win for a program trying to establish itself as a contender in its conference and may even give the Pirates a marquee win. 

Key Player for the Gamecocks

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    Marcus Lattimore has to be the key to this game. 

    If Connor Shaw can't go (which it's looking to be about 50-50 at the moment), a heavy dose of Marcus Lattimore and the rest of the runners will be necessary. With the Pirates running a weak 3-4 defense, there should be plenty of space for him. 

    How much can Lattimore's knees take? If he gets 30 carries, he could push for 300 yards, but will his knee hold up?

Key Player for the Pirates

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    East Carolina gave South Carolina a big scare last year with the excellent play of its quarterback, the excellent Dominique Davis. 

    Now Rio Johnson has the reigns. With targets such as the 6'8" Justin Jones running around, Johnson could have a huge game. If he plays well, this game will be close—or even an ECU win.

The Gamecocks Will Win If...

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    ...the passing defense contains the four-wide receiver passing attack of the East Carolina Pirates. 

    The Pirates won't be able to run on the Gamecocks, but they sure can pass. If the Gamecocks allow themselves to fall behind early, this could be a loss. ECU can score through the air, so the passing defense must play well.

The Pirates Will Win If...

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    ...their offensive line can give Rio Johnson time to throw, and Rio hits the opportunities he gets.

    Tight end/wide receiver Justin Jones could be a nightmare for the Gamecocks. However, it will take a perfect offensive game for the Pirates to win. Johnson isn't the quarterback Dominique Davis was for ECU, but if he gets time, this team can score.

Prediction

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    ECU will be able to score. So will South Carolina.

    Look for it to be another close game until the fourth quarter, when Marcus Lattimore takes over and runs the Gamecocks to victory. 

    Prediction: South Carolina 42, East Carolina 28

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