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SOUTH CAROLINA INSTALLED AS SEVENTEEN-POINT FAVORITE OVER EAST CAROLINA

We don’t like to use the word “epic.”  In fact wherever possible, we actively eschew it.  Think about it: If everything’s “epic,” then nothing is epic.  Right?

We also can’t stand the “Keep Calm and (Whatever Whatever)” icons … unless of course they’re being worn by our favorite Twitterer, Ellie Chivette.

Anyway …

With those thoughts in mind, we’ve had a lot of people urging us to “Keep Calm and Trust the Visor” in the wake of last week’s humiliating University of South Carolina football defeat at the hands of Texas A&M.  That’s obviously a reference to visor-wearing (throwing?) USC head coach Steve Spurrier – who has guided the Gamecock program to unprecedented heights over the last four seasons.

There’s just one small problem with such advice: Spurrier can’t coach defense – which is where the Gamecocks (0-1, 0-1 SEC) were badly exposed last Thursday, surrendering a school record 680 yards of offense to the Aggies.

LORENZO WARD
LORENZO WARD: FEELING THE HEAT

“Keep Calm and Trust Lorenzo Ward” doesn’t really have the same ring to it, does it?

This week the Gamecocks host East Carolina – which is coming off a 10-3 season (and which runs the same sort of up-tempo offense South Carolina struggled to contain last week).

In 2011, South Carolina spotted ECU a 17-0 lead before coming back and winning the game 56-37 in Charlotte, N.C.  In 2012 Dylan Thompson – playing in relief of Connor Shaw – three for 330 yards and three touchdowns in a 48-10 rout of the Pirates.

Despite their “epic” (oops) egg-laying against the Aggies, the Gamecocks have been installed by the odds makers as 17-point favorites at home against the Pirates – who racked up 582 yards of total offense in their 52-7 season opening win over North Carolina Central last weekend.

Senior signal-caller Shane Carden completed 26 of 37 passes for 283 yards and three touchdowns, while senior wide receiver Justin Hardy caught eight passes for 87 yards and a pair of scores.  Hardy – who eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark in each of the previous two seasons – also threw a 41-yard touchdown strike on a trick play in the first half.

We know what you’re thinking … the Gamecock defense is better than the North Carolina Central defense, right?

Uhhh … right?

Let’s hope so … but the early signs haven’t been optimistic …

beat ecu

Pics: Travis Bell Photography