South Carolina Gamecocks head coach Steve Spurrier will be the first to admit that things haven’t gone according to plan for his team this season. Preseason polls projected South Carolina to win the SEC East relatively easily, but the team will likely finish second in the division to the Georgia Bulldogs at season’s end.
Considering that the Gamecocks are a completely different team now from the one that started the season, second place is still a notable accomplishment.
South Carolina lost starting quarterback Stephen Garcia to suspension, starting running back—and preseason Heisman Trophy hopeful—Marcus Lattimore to injury and has had to rely on their defense to win games.
The Gamecocks aren’t the offensive juggernaut they were expected to be, but that hasn’t prevented them from putting together a respectable season.
Much of the team’s success can be credited to Spurrier’s abilities as a coach. Given what he had to work with, the Ol’ Ball Coach has shown once again why he’s one of college football’s best.
I highly doubt that the South Carolina athletic department is calling for Spurrier’s removal as the program’s head coach, despite the Gamecocks’ (likely) failure to win the SEC East after all the preseason hype.
Besides, if Georgia somehow loses to Kentucky next week, South Carolina can still backdoor its way into the SEC Championship game by virtue of the Week 2 win over the Bulldogs.
The SEC is a tough conference; winning games—and to some degree, winning titles—is the measure by which coaches are judged. Spurrier probably won’t win a division title this season, but he’s got nothing to worry about in terms of being replaced as the head coach of the Gamecocks.
Here’s why Steve Spurrier deserves to coach at South Carolina for as long as he’s able.