South Carolina Football 2011: Post-Spring Depth Chart Revealed—Any Surprises?

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South Carolina Football 2011:  Post-Spring Depth Chart Revealed—Any Surprises?
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

South Carolina has finally released it's post-spring game and practice depth charts.

While there are not too many surprises, this team has some insane talent all up and down the board. The depth chart is even missing some good players that will play in the future.

Let's take a look. 

 

Offense:

Quarterback:

1. Stephen Garcia

1. Connor Shaw

3. Andrew Clifford

4. Dylan Thompson

 

The biggest surprise is the fact that Stephen Garcia is still listed as the co-starter with Connor Shaw. I think this is a good sign for South Carolina fans, and all indications are that he will be back in the fall. 

For more information about the quarterbacks, check out my evaluation article.

 

Running Backs:

 1.  Marcus Lattimore

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

2.  Kenny Miles

3.  Eric Baker

 

No surprises here. 

You have one of the best backs in college football football, followed by a back who could start almost anywhere else in Kenny Miles.

Eric Baker, a talented back, is finally back from injury.

Look for freshman Shon Carson to appear on the depth chart somewhere by the end of the season.

 

Fullbacks:

1. Dalton Wilson

2. Matt Coffee

3. Billy Byrne

 

This comes as a semi-surprise for me, as Matt Coffee had a nice spring game and seems to have the pedigree to take over (his brother was Glenn Coffee, formerly of the San Fransisco 49ers).  Instead, Dalton Wilson, a less talented version of Patrick DiMarco holds the starting spot. 

 

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Wide Receivers:

WR 1:

1. Alshon Jeffery

2. DeAngelo Smith

3. Lamar Scruggs

 

WR 2:

1. Jason Barnes

2. Ace Sanders

3. Bryce Sherman

 

WR 3:

1. D.L. Moore

2. Nick Jones

3. DeAngelo Smith

 

South Carolina has three starting receivers...Alshon Jeffery, Jason Barnes and D.L. Moore. This is surprising to me because DeAngelo Smith (backup to Alshon) was amazing during the spring, as was Ace Sanders, who is Jason Barnes' backup. 

Moore doesn't surprise me too much...he is a fast, tall wide receiver, who could be very good. However, I won't be shocked to see this get switched up before the first game. 

Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

Either way, this is a loaded (and I mean LOADED) wide receiver group.

 

Tight Ends:

1. Justice Cunningham

2. Corey Simmons

3. Payton Brady

4. Chaun Gresham

 

No surprises here, but this is a weak group. Justice Cunningham has good blocking ability, but is a limited offensive play maker. He definitely should start and could be very good helping the line open holes for Lattimore. 

The three behind him are unknown quantities. 

Here is hoping one of the three tight ends recruited can come in and take the role of offensive threat out of the tight end position.

 

Offensive Line:

LT:

1. Kyle Nunn

2. Rokevious Watkins

 

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

LG:

1. A.J. Cann

2. Kenny Davis

3. Ronald Patrick

 

C:

1. T. J. Johnson

2. Travis Ford

3. Ryan Broadhead

 

RG:

1. Terence Campbell

2. Kaleb Broome

 

RT:

1. Rokevious Watkins

2. Cody Gibson

 

Another group with no surprises. However, I will say that while this is the most solid offensive line South Carolina has had in years, it is also one of the shallowest. When your starting right tackle is listed as your backup left tackle, you have a problem. 

Five-star recruit Brandon Shell WILL be in the lineup in the fall...he is a mammoth (6'7") tackle and will immediately add depth. 

 

Defense:

 

Defensive End:

DE 1:

1. Devin Taylor

2. Byron McKnight

 

DE 2:

1. Melvin Ingram

2. Chaz Sutton

 

This is a sick set of four defensive ends. Devin Taylor is an All-SEC performer, and Melvin Ingram is a versatile and powerful end who was one of the SEC's top sack guys. 

Byron McKnight and Chaz Sutton are both VERY good players. 

The question is, where does that certain superstar recruit with the funny last name fit into all this? 

Does he take a starting spot from Melvin Ingram? Does he back up one of these guys as a pass rush specialist?

Who knows. 

It will be interesting to find out...Ingram could move to defensive tackle.

 

Defensive Tackle:

DT 1:

1. Travian Robertson

2. Byron Jerideau

3. J.T. Surratt

 

DT 2:

1. Alderick Fordham

2. Kelcy Quarles

3. Corey Robinson

 

Another loaded part of this team, the defensive tackle position is set pretty well.

I am surprised Kelcy Quarrels didn't overtake Alderick Fordham for the starting second tackle position, but you can't go wrong either way, and Spurrier doesn't always like to start freshman.

As stated above, things can change when Clowney arrives...Ingram will likely see time at the DT position. There is a wealth of talent on the defensive line, though. 

 

Middle Linebacker:

1. Shaq Wilson

2. Reginald Bowens

3. Qua Gilchrist

4. Alonzo Winfield

 

Shaq Wilson is an incredible leader and excellent middle linebacker, when he is healthy. Hopefully, he can stay on the field throughout the entire season.

A big surprise is seeing Reginald Bowens jump up to the No. 2 spot over the athletically gifted Qua Gilchrist. 

Alonzo Winfield is a good player to have at the No. 4 spot. 

 

Weakside Linebacker:

1. Rodney Paulk

2. Quin Smith

2. Demario Jeffery

 

Another strong group led by a veteran with injury issues.

Rodney Paulk is a great deal like Jasper Brinkley from a few years ago when he is on the field. He is a train that can hit, and he does big damage with his hits. 

Quin Smith and Demario "I'm Alshon's Cousin" Jeffery are great players and amazing backups that could step in and start at any moment, and are both currently listed as No. 2. 

 

Spur:

1. Antonio Allen

1. DeVonte Holloman

3. Jared Shaw

4. Matt O'Brian

 

Another position that isn't 100 percent settled, Antonio Allen and DeVonte Holloman are both great players and will contribute regardless of which one is starting. They are both hammers that can hit but play fairly well in coverage.  

Jared Shaw and Matt O'Brian won't see much time at this position barring an injury to one of the top two guys. 

 

Cornerback:

CB 1:

1. Stephon Gilmore

2. Victor Hampton

3. Cadarious Sanders

 

CB 2:

1. Akeem Aguste

2. C.C. Whitlock

3. Martay Mattox

4. Marty Markett

 

The most important defensive position coming into this year has to be cornerback. Last year was atrocious, with the South Carolina defense giving up way too many big pass plays. 

This year's group is as talented as it has ever been, led by All-American candidate Stephon Gilmore. Akeem Aguste comes back to his natural (and best) position, and C.C. Whitlock wants to prove once and for all that his track-star speed and five-star recruit status was not for nothing. 

Behind those guys, some talented freshmen in Victor Hampton (Army All-American), Martay Mattox (four-star converted quarterback) and Cadarious Sanders add some youthful depth. Marty Markett is a good story who played well last year as a walk on. 

 

Strong Safety:

1. D.J. Swearinger

2. Corey Addison

2. Sharrod Golightly

 

D.J. Swearinger is the obvious choice for starting strong safety, but the battle for backup is still open. Sharrod Golightly had an incredible spring for a freshman and truly showed that he was worth every star of his four-star rating from 2009. 

Corey Addison is a highly talented player as well, who shows flashes of being a hard hitter. 

My guess? 

Golightly wins the job. 

 

Free Safety

1. Jimmy Legree

2. Brison Williams

 

Jimmy Legree is quickly becoming a fan favorite. He is a diminutive little guy who works his tail off, and it is great to see him on top of the depth chart. Brison Williams is his back up. 

This may be the "weakest" defensive position from a talent position but certainly not  heart. 

 

Overview:

This is a truly loaded team that has veteran starters and youthful talent behind them.  This is starting to look like a team that is set up for sustained success in the SEC. 

Haters are going to hate...people still don't want to admit that South Carolina has turned the corner as a program and is consistently drawing top level talent (which is the key to success). 

Keep in mind, Florida wasn't always a power...it wasn't until the '90s (ahem, Spurrier era) that they found true success. 

Same with Oregon. 

South Carolina is on that path, whether you like it or not. 

Hate on, haters. They will see you on the field.

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