Lattimore ready for home opener

The No. 10 South Carolina Gamecocks prepare to take on Navy this week with high expectations. They're hoping to increase the intensity at practice and make this the weekend they finally get everything together to play as a fundamentally sound football team.

"It all starts at practice," said sophomore tailback Marcus Lattimore.

Lattimore, a potential Heisman Trophy candidate, got special attention over the summer for gaining 15 extra pounds in the weigh room. He also had a great game against Georgia last week rushing 176 yards and helping the Gamecocks come out on top 45-42.

However, Lattimore thinks he has some improving to do as well before next week.

"When the offensive line blocks for five [yards] I'm suppose to get seven, you know, some runs I was just getting five. I see that on film and it's something I've got to correct," said Lattimore.

Lattimore goes up against what he called the best defense in the nation every day at practice and said between that and watching film he is always improving.

He is not known for being the fastest runner, but definitely being a smart one. He says the main thing he works on is knowing what the defense is doing on every play.

"You've got to study what the linebackers do, what the D-line does because when you're not CJ Spiller and you don't have all that quickness and all that speed you've got to be smart," said Lattimore, "these guys are faster. I could do it in high school, but that's just me. I've got to get faster."

The Gamecocks and Navy are both coming into the game on Saturday 2-0. Navy has assembled one of the best rushing attacks in the country, thanks to a team effort.

Despite the fast start to the season, South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier sees plenty of room for improvement in the entire team.

"I still think our players are better than the way we're performing right now. We're going to find out," Spurrier said "I'm trying to do a better job; trying to get some pass defense out there and trying to get some pass offense out there. We haven't been very good in those areas."

Lattimore said the intensity was high in practice on Monday and they hope to keep it that way so that the Gamecocks get things straightened out and play a good game on Saturday. The Gamecocks have played five road games since their last appearance at home. Lattimore said he is definitely happy this game is at Williams Brice.

"Can't wait to hear that 'Sandstorm', it's going to be a great atmosphere," Lattimore said.

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