South Carolina Gamecocks: Mike Davis' Golden Opportunity in Lattimore's Absence

William RenkenCorrespondent IIIOctober 31, 2012

LEXINGTON, KY - SEPTEMBER 29: Mike Davis #28 of the South Carolina Gamecocks breaks free from the Kentucky Wildcats during at Commonwealth Stadium on September 29, 2012 in Lexington, Kentucky.    (Photo by John Sommers II/Getty Images)
John Sommers II/Getty Images

The brass ring speech is one of the biggest cliches in sports, as well as in life: To be able to reach the pinnacle of success and opportunity through hard work and determination.

That is the position Mike Davis is in for South Carolina since the horrific injury that sadly ended Marcus Lattimore's 2012 season on Saturday.

With three games left on the Gamecocks' schedule, the freshman, Davis, has the opportunity to step into the position and role he was recruited out of Stephenson High School to fill.

No doubt anyone labeled as "Lattimore's successor," especially in the wake of such a horrific injury that caused such an out-pour of support and emotion from all of college football, would call the circumstances less than enviable.

There has not been tremendous opportunity for Davis to shine yet in 2012, based on the fact that Lattimore was getting the majority of the carries thus far. To date, Davis has 24 carries for 157 yards and a touchdown under his belt as the third-string back behind Lattimore and Kenny Miles.

Lattimore's injury, though, this year has opened the door for Davis.

Granted, Miles' experience in this position will be depended on for the Gamecocks. Miles was instrumental in steadying South Carolina's running game en route to its 11-2 finish and victory in the Capital One Bowl.

But Davis is clearly the man of tomorrow for the Gamecocks, and with three games to go, he has the chance to make his mark early for the fans in Columbia, SC.

Lattimore's emergence in 2010 wasn't the result of an All-American being lost for the season, but rather an opportunity and a stage against Georgia during the second game of that season.

Thirty-seven carries, 182 yards and three touchdowns later, a star was born.

The stage for Davis comes after a bye week for South Carolina when the Gamecocks host Arkansas at home on November 10th.

The Razorbacks might have given up an average of 161 yards on the ground over its first five games, but over the last three only an average of 61.You can weigh the opponents over those spans to draw your own conclusions, but regardless, Arkansas has been stingy against the run recently.

Stingy or not, in the midst of a season that has shown incredible highs and lows for the Gamecocks, Davis' opportunity has arrived to not only leave his imprint on 2012 but lay the groundwork for the 2013 season.

A brass ring for the taking.