Ok, so maybe I'm a day late but here's a quick little update of everything that is currently going on in South Carolina football.
Paulk Out for Year with Torn ACL; Backup Reggie Bowens has Sprained Ligament
Starting LB Rodney Paulk tore his ACL in the first quarter against NC State last Thursday, ending his season. This is especially frustrating for Paulk because he missed most of last year with a similar injury. He said he has to wait until the end of the year to apply for a medical redshirt, and hopefully he will get it.
Shaq Wilson is a very capable fill-in for Paulk, so there will not be too big a dip in talent there. Redshirt freshman Reggie Bowens has a sprained knee ligament as well. Bowens has not played a down for USC, but his loss does hurt the LB depth which is already thin because of Paulk's injury.
It is unclear how long Bowens will be out, but he will definitely miss the UGA game.
Curran, Bulldogs Will Not Overlook Gamecocks
Rennie Curran did an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Wednesday in which he said that he respects USC's defense and reiterrated how much UGA needs this game after losing to Oklahome State 24-10 last week.
"It’s going to be a huge game for our reputation at Georgia. A huge game, just as if we were playing in the SEC Championship Game. I’m ready to fight."
Spurrier Promises to Open Up Offense This Saturday
Steve Spurrier said that the playcalling will not be as conservative as it was against NC State, when Carolina mostly ran the ball and threw short passes. Expect more deep throws and trick plays this week, and maybe even a Bryce Sherman sighting.
Sherman is supposed to get maybe a few carries against UGA (along with Kenny Miles) and will definitely see time against FAU next week. Spurrier is a little hesitant to bring out some of these guys because they have never played a down in college football and throwing them to the wolves in Sanford Stadium may not be the best idea. However, I think we will see Sherman at least once or twice on Saturday.
Taylor Wins SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week
Freshman Devin Taylor won SEC Defensive Lineman of the week for his impressive performance against NC State that included a blocked punt and a forced fumble. This is a great start to his career, and I expect him to grab several more of these honors before it's all said and done.
Geathers to Return
DE Clifton Geathers will be returning from his one-game suspension for getting into a fight with a bouncer at Club Ice this week. He will probably not start, as Devin Taylor was more than fine replacing him last week. He should definitely get playing time though, as he is an extremely talented player
UGA Expected to Platoon QBs; Cox has flu-like symptoms
Starting QB Joe Cox has flu-like symptoms but is expected to play on Saturday. This, plus his horrible play against UGA, has led to speculation over whether or not backup QB Logan Gray will play (him and DB Branden Smith took snaps agains OK State). Cox is the announced starter, but I think we will definitely see Gray on Saturday. RB Caleb King, who missed the Oklahoma State game, is expected to start.
The current line for the game is UGA (-7 1/2). Personally I would take the under, since this game has been decided by less than seven points in five of the last seven meetings.