SEC Media Days is underway in Birmingham, Alabama, which means the Steve Spurrier show is about to begin … or continue, depending on how you want to look at it.

Spurrier, 69, is in the midst of a career renaissance at the University of South Carolina – turning a program that defined mediocrity for over a century into a bona fide national powerhouse.  After posting a middling 35-28 mark in his first five seasons in Columbia (including a losing record in conference play), Spurrier has gone 42-11 over the last four seasons.  That stretch includes three straight 11-win seasons, three straight New Year’s Day bowl victories and three straight Top Ten finishes – a level of success South Carolina fans only dreamt about prior to his arrival.

Perhaps most importantly, Spurrier’s teams have won five straight over arch-rival Clemson – which is even more impressive considering the Tigers have reemerged as a national powerhouse over the last three years (posting a 32-8 record during that stretch).

The “Head Ball Coach” is feeling it, too … as evidenced by the fact he’s back in the smack-talking form that drove opponents crazy during his 12-year career at the University of Florida (1990-2001).

Last month, Spurrier went so far as to train his trash talk on University of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban – who has won four national championships (including three in the last five years with the Crimson Tide).

“How many SECs has he won there in eight years?” Spurrier asked of Saban. “He’s won two. He’s won three nationals but he’s only won two SECs in eight years.  Now if you had the No. 1 recruiting class every year and so forth, I don’t know if he has maxed out potentially as well as he could.”

Whoa …

We get that Spurrier has plenty of room to run his mouth these days.  Hell, this website was ragging him out like nobody’s business back in 2009 … before he ordered us a nice tall glass of STFU.

But Saban?  The guy whose teams have gone 72-9 over the past six seasons?  Isn’t he one of the handful of college coaches Spurrier doesn’t have room to criticize? 

Of course in Spurrier’s defense the last time he went head-to-head against the top-ranked Crimson Tide, this happened … 

“The biggest takeaway from this … is that Spurrier is feeling pretty good about his South Carolina team,” USA Today ‘s David Climer noted.  “Even with the losses of Jadeveon Clowney on defense and Connor Shaw on offense, Spurrier is bullish on his Gamecocks.  History tells us that the more confident Spurrier is about his own team, the more likely he is to fire verbal shots across the bows of rival programs.”

Gamecock fans certainly hope that’s true …

Pic: Travis Bell Photography