KEY PLAY: Carolina uses essentially a ''spread offense'' on its punts, stationing its offensive linemen double the normal distance from one another. Marvin Mitchell stormed untouched through one of these gaps and blocked Brown's first punt, providing a big break that Tennessee parlayed into a 7-0 lead.
KEY PLAYER: Demetris Summers. All he did in the quarter was rush seven times for 75 yards, a 10.7 yards-per-carry average. Tennessee simply could not tackle him, thanks to his size, speed and uncanny ability to spread the pursuit, then cut back against the grain.
KEY STAT: Tennessee, which had allowed just 53.3 rushings yards per game in its first three outings of 2003, allowed 112 rushing yards in the first quarter alone.
RECAP: After three consecutive no-gain stops by Robert Peace left Carolina with a fourth-and-goal at the UT 1-yard line, the Gamecocks finally scored on a pass from Donrdrial Pinkins to Hart Turner. The 14-all tie lasted until just before halftime. Clausen hit Tony Brown for a 21-yard gain, hit James Banks for 14 yards and hit Troy Fleming for 14 more, setting up a 33-yard James Wilhoit field goal that provided a 17-14 lead with just 1:41 left to intermission.
KEY PLAY: Pinkins was belted to the turf by Vol linebacker Kevin Burnett as he unloaded his heave to Turner but managed to put the ball on the money, tying the score at 14-all on the second play of the second quarter.
KEY PLAYER: Wilhoit. In addition to his 33-yard tie-breaking field goal, he also banged the ensuing kickoff six yards deep into the end zone for a touchback, forcing Carolina to start its final possession of the half deep in its own territory.
KEY STAT: Carolina had more yards (219 to 160), more first downs (11 to 8) and more possession time (16:15 to 13:45) in the first half, yet Tennessee had a 17-14 lead.
RECAP: With Tennessee's offense gone on hiatus, Carolina produced the only points of the quarter by driving from its one-yard line to the Vol 20-yard line, from which point Daniel Weaver nailed a 37-yard field goal that tied the score at 17-all. Oddly, Weaver was benched last week after making just one of his first five field goal tries of 2003. He reclaimed his job, however, when backup Josh Brown went 0-for-2 against Alabama-Birmingham last weekend.
KEY PLAY: (Tie) On third-and-eight at Carolina's, Pinkins hit Syvelle Newton with a 21-yard pass, then found Mikal Goodman with a 43-yarder on the very next play as Carolina marched from its 13-yard line to the UT 23 via two big pass plays. Weaver hit his game-tying field goal four plays later.
KEY PLAYER: Dustin Colquitt. Tennessee's punter nailed two of the best kicks of his career back to back -- booting a 63-yarder that went out of bounds at the Carolina 2-yard line, then hitting a ''pooch kick'' that was downed at the Gamecock 1-yard line. He effectively kept the Gamecocks backed up all quarter, and the field position he provided may well have been the difference in the game.
KEY STAT: Carolina outgained Tennessee 102 yards to 36 yards as the Vol offense mysteriously lost its ability to execute a play.
RECAP: Seven Cedric Houston runs moved Tennessee to the Gamecock 28-yard line but Wilhoit's 46-yard field goal attempt was wide right, leaving the score knotted at 17.
KEY PLAY: Carolina appeared on the verge of scoring with three minutes left but a pass completion from Pinkins to Goodman that carried to the Vol 30-yard line was nullified when Goodman was ruled to have pushed off. The offensive interference call resulted in a 15-yard penalty that gave Carolina the ball at its own 30, not UT's 30.
KEY PLAYER: Colquitt again. Punting from his 17-yard line, he boomed a 57-yarder that had a minus-five yard return, then blasted a 56 yarder that rolled dead on Carolina's 4-yard line. Not surprisingly, he was awarded a game ball.
KEY STAT: Tennessee's offense continued to limp. The Vols managed a woeful 45 yards of total offense in the period, completing just two of five passes for 22 yards and rushing seven times for another 23 yards.
RECAP: An interference penalty against Jabari Greer gave Carolina a first down at the UT 14-yard line but a procedure penalty stymied the Gamecocks, forcing Weaver to kick a 24-yard field goal that provided a 20-17 lead. Four Cedric Houston runs led Tennessee from the Carolina 25-yard line to the 4, then Clausen found Banks on a four-yard touchdown pass that won the game, 23-20.
KEY PLAY: Banks, covered by All-SEC cornerback Dunta Robinson, ran a fade route in the right corner of the North end zone. He was open only briefly, but that was long enough to haul in Clausen's game-winning pass.
KEY PLAYER: Banks. Without his key catch, the Vols and Gamecocks might still be out on Shields-Watkins Field playing.
KEY STAT: For the game, Tennessee was outrushed by 100 yards (217 to 117) but gained an average of 20 yards on each exchange of punts as Colquitt averaged 51.7 yards per kick to Carolina's 31.3.