Florida Gators' next opponent: Scouting report on the South Carolina Gamecocks

David Whitley
Gator Sports
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South Carolina (6-3, 3-3 in SEC) at Florida (5-4, 2-4 in SEC)

When: 4 p.m. TV: SEC Network Radio: 103.7-FM, AM-850

Where: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium

Last week: The Gamecocks took a 31-15 halftime lead and hung on to beat Vanderbilt 38-27. The Commodores had 452 yards of offense but were done in by four turnovers. The win made South Carolina bowl eligible, which erased a bit of the sting from a 23-10 loss to Missouri the game before. South Carolina was ranked No. 25 and had won four straight games heading into that one.

Best offensive player: It’s a tough call because South Carolina’s offense has been consistently erratic. Oklahoma transfer Spencer Rattler hasn’t been the savior fans hoped for at QB. The most talented player is probably tight end Jaheim Bell. He stepped in at tailback last week due to injuries and had 16 carries for 56 yards. Offensive coordinator Marcus Satterfield has been criticized for not getting Bell more touches. Given the trouble UF has had covering tight ends this year, Bell might be more involved in the game plan Saturday.

Best defensive player:  Freshman safety Nick Emmanwori was inserted during the Gamecocks’ first defensive series of the year and hasn’t been out of the lineup since. He leads the team with 51 tackles and is arguably making the biggest impact of any first-year player in the SEC.

Fun fact: Steve Spurrier is the winningest coach in South Carolina history, going 86-49 from 2005-2015. He’s also the winningest coach in Florida history, going 122-27 from 1990-2001. No South Carolina coach has ever moved on to take a job at Florida.

Series: Florida leads 29-10-3. The Gamecocks won 40-17 last year in Columbia. It was the third straight loss for the Gators and sped the tailspin that led to Dan Mullen’s departure.

Quote: “I really wanted to do it last week because it would have been the earliest we would have been bowl eligible in a long time.  We continue to accomplish a lot of firsts. We continue to build and get this program better each and every day.” – Coach Shae Beamer on South Carolina clinching bowl eligibility with its win over Vanderbilt.

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