After surviving a scare against upstart Central Florida last week, No. 13 South Carolina will host hapless Kentucky on Saturday in another apparent college football mismatch.
In their 28-25 nail-biter over the Knights, the Gamecocks (3-1, 1-1 SEC) committed four turnovers while allowing UCF quarterback Blake Bortles to pass for 358 yards and two touchdowns, but South Carolina also forced four turnovers and amassed 490 total yards of offense as well.
The Wildcats (1-3, 0-1 SEC) are coming off a 24-7 stinker against Florida in which they posted a measly 173 total yards and allowed 246 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
Here's a breakdown of their SEC clash on Saturday in Columbia, S.C.
*Statistics courtesy of CFBStats.com
When: Saturday, Oct. 5 at 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Williams-Brice Stadium, Columbia, S.C.
Live Stream: ESPN3
Betting Line (via Covers.com): South Carolina -21
Kentucky Injuries (via USA Today)
South Carolina Injuries (via USA Today)
Out: RB Brandon Wilds (Shoulder), DE Devin Washington (Concussion)
Questionable: WR Carlton Heard (Hamstring), OT Mike Matulis (Shoulder), LB Kyle Morini (Elbow), DE Gerald Turner (Ankle), QB Connor Shaw (Shoulder)
Probable: LB James King (Foot)
Top Storyline: The Status of South Carolina QB Connor Shaw
South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw was given a timetable of two to three weeks to recover after injuring his right shoulder against UCF last week.
So much for that rehab schedule.
Spurrier said on Tuesday, via Smith:
(Shaw) is a tough guy, obviously a very tough guy. He obviously had a lot of pain with the hit the other day because, when he came off the field, it looked like he was out for the season, maybe. But now, he is (in) good shape.
Shaw ranks 25th in the nation in passing yardage per attempt and 19th in quarterback rating. He has posted six touchdowns and no interceptions while rushing for 232 yards.
Backup Dylan Thompson was 15-of-32 passing with an interception in relief of Shaw against UCF, but he also threw for 261 yards and ran for a score.
Prediction: South Carolina 33, Kentucky 16
Who will win on Saturday?
Kentucky has appeared to play better on defense the past two games, holding Louisville to 27 points and Florida to 24 points, but its offense hasn't held up its end of the bargain.
The Wildcats rank 96th in the country in points per game this season. That includes scoring a combined 20 points against Louisville and Florida.
Granted, South Carolina's defense has been rather disappointing this season, but the Gamecocks should still be able to limit the Wildcats in Columbia, S.C. The Gamecocks have had trouble against the pass this season, but they've been good against the run, ranking 34th in yards allowed per carry.
In addition, South Carolina running back Mike Davis has been on fire. He ranks 11th in the nation and first in the SEC in rushing yardage per game. He posted a career-high 167 yards rushing and three touchdowns against UCF, and he's had a run of 50 yards or longer in three of his past four contests.