Gamecocks turn attention to Florida

Following USC's disappointing 48-36 loss to Arkansas over the weekend, the Gamecocks returned to the practice fields on Monday night to begin preparations for this Saturday's battle against the defending national champion Florida Gators. Read inside for a full report on Monday's workout.


One of the keys to this week is how the defense responds from their poor showing against the Razorbacks, but Coach Steve Spurrier believes the defense got that bad game out of their system and will bounce back against the Gators.

"We did okay," said Spurrier of how the defense practiced on Monday night. "With Coach Nix and those coaches, we'll get them ready to play. That was really the first lousy defensive game we've had all year."

Spurrier said he's interested to see how Arkansas fares against Tennessee this weekend to find out if the Hogs are truly as good as they looked against the Gamecock defense on Saturday, when they racked up a record 542 yards rushing.

"We'll find out how Arkansas plays against Tennessee. If they can't run against Tennessee, it's all us. They didn't run far against Auburn, but maybe Auburn's got a lot tougher defense than most people."

Spurrier was asked if his offense's strong performance the past two weeks was any consolation, but the Ball Coach insisted that there are no moral victories in the midst of USC's three game losing streak.

"Insignificant. We got behind early in both games and had to throw more than probably we needed to. Most teams that throw more than 50 times very seldom win."

Looking ahead to Florida, Spurrier discussed what he sees in the new look Gator defense, which lost nine starters from last year's national championship unit.

"They have their scheme of things. They don't make many mistakes. It's a whole different bunch (than last season). They play hard, play smart, love to play and are a well-coached bunch. They've hung in there pretty well."

With the drama and storylines that always come from Spurrier playing against his old school, the Ball Coach said that none of that matters this week and Carolina's focus is simply to play their best game of the season.

"We just need to play ball and be competitive. We weren't very competitive last game. We're looking forward to this week and representing our team and our university a lot better than last week."


Notes:

- Captain Munnerlyn sprained his left foot on his interception on the 2-point conversion against Arkansas, and Spurrier said they'll wait until later in the week to see if he can go against Florida.

- Emanuel Cook sprained his ankle against the Razorbacks, and Spurrier is optimistic he'll be ready to play against the Gators.

- Cory Boyd and Mike Davis are both healthy this week.


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