USC working on fundamentals during bye week

After a much needed two day rest, the Gamecocks returned to the practice fields on Tuesday night for a short workout. The team will enjoy a well deserved bye week this weekend before facing arch-rival Clemson in the regular season finale next Saturday.

It was a tough loss against Florida last weekend, but Coach Steve Spurrier said the Gamecocks need to get back to the basics of the game in order to improve before Clemson comes to town.

"We're practicing the fundamentals, and (just) trying to get a little bit better today," said Spurrier after the hour long practice session.

Carolina football nearly had its biggest upset ever last weekend, falling late to the No. 1 ranked Gators by a narrow margin of 24-14. Even with many tough losses and near misses this season, Spurrier said that his team still has a good attitude heading into the game against their biggest rival.

"They were okay, yeah we've got a bunch of young guys that are playing hard," said Spurrier. "We've got good spirits, good attitudes."

It certainly does not get any easier for Carolina. After facing the top ranked team in the nation, they will be facing a Clemson team that could be on a six game winning streak when they roll into Williams-Brice Stadium on November 28th. Clemson is led by their Heisman trophy candidate at running back, C.J. Spiller.

"They've got a good team," said Spurrier. "A very good overall team. Offense, defense, special teams, they've got a good team."

Gamecock fans are anxiously awaiting the game against the in-state Tigers, a team they have beaten only once during Spurrier's run at South Carolina. With the danger of ending the season on a losing streak again, Spurrier did not mince words when it comes to the importance of the game.

"If we're fortunate to win the last one, we'll have a very good year, if we don't we'll have a very average year," noted Spurrier. "Simple as that."


- Punter Spencer Lanning fell on his shoulder making tackle on a Florida punt return, and was in a yellow, no contact jersey on Tuesday. His injury is not considered serious, though.

- Deep snapper Charles Turner was also in a yellow jersey today, Spurrier joked that he had never seen both a kicker and a snapper in non-contact jerseys at the same time.

- DE Cliff Matthews was in a yellow jersey as well, but Spurrier said that was simply a precaution as the junior lineman's shoulder continues to heal. Matthews is expected to be close to 100% by the time the Clemson game arrives.

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