Sept. 14, 2013
Head Coach James Franklin
My overview of the game, without watching it, and not looking at the stats yet, I don't think we executed and played with passion like we have in the past in the first half. I think we got dominated on the offensive and defensive line in the first half. I thought we showed up in the second half and played with passion and emotion. I don't think we played particularly smart either. We had two turnovers in the red zone and that really hurt us. We're going to go back to the beginning and get back to work this week, and try and get better. I'm glad to see that we competed in the second half and got ourselves back into the game, but the two turnovers killed us.
On Connor Shaw's play in the first half
I thought Connor Shaw played as good of a first half that you can play. He made a lot of great throws, but we weren't really getting to him because he had a lot of time to sit in the pocket. We never made him get uncomfortable and that let him have a great first half.
On how the game could've been different if the team played in the first half like they did in the second half
There's no doubt the game could've been different. We were able to create some turnovers on defense and special teams in the second half and we gave ourselves a chance. We played the way we've played over the last couple of years in the second half so it would've been a much more interesting game.
On the play of Mike Davis and Brandon Wilds
They were doing a great job on inside zone and screen plays. They created a lot of controversy with our defense and South Carolina's offensive line had a big role in that as well.
Wesley Tate • RB • Senior
On the second half
The offensive line did a great job up front at the point of attack and allowed me to get to the second level to make some plays.
On running angry
A little bit, I was a little frustrated I didn't get any reps in the first half, but that's how I should run the ball all the time.
On the first half vs. the second half
I think we came out really slow, we out-scored them in the second half and we can't start out games like that. In practice we need to start out fast, whatever that is we don't know yet but we better get it fixed.
On role in first half
I guess coach felt like (Brian) Kimbrow and (Jerron) Seymour were doing a good job, I guess it wasn't my time. He gave me an opportunity in the second half and I tried to make the most of it.
Steven Clarke • CB • Senior
On the first half
We came out slow and we can't allow good teams do that. We dug ourselves in a hole that we couldn't get out of and we can't do that next time.
Wesley Johnson • OL • Senior
Thoughts on the game
We didn't get off to a good start, we have to work on that in the future. I'm proud of the way we fought back, this team always has a lot of heart, but we have to change our expectations from the team that's pulling the upset to the team that is winning every game.
Jordan Matthews • WR • Senior
On slow start
We have to execute, no penalties, we can't have three and outs, once we have first downs we get rolling as an offense.
SOUTH CAROLINA QUOTES
Head Coach Steve Spurrier
Well that was a good win for the Gamecocks and we're happy to get a good win. Obviously it was a game that looked like we were dominating. We scored on maybe the first four possessions then stuff started happening, we quit making third downs I guess. We scored on five of our first seven possessions and then ran out the clock there at the end. Good play for Jimmy Legree, made a nice pick from the guy on the slant and then Connor [Shaw] running it out to the end zone. We had to throw it there I thought, but fortunately he was able to run out of the pocket. Obviously we had some careless plays. Our special team play, I told Coach Robinson, we've got to get you some better players out there. I don't know what we're doing but we don't make anything happen and even the good kickoffs we were running back to the 30 and so forth. We've got to get better there but overall it was a good game. Connor played very well, Dylan [Thompson] came in and hit some nice ones early, ran and made a good play, and had one sort of careless pass. But anyway, it was a good win for us. Happy to get another win at home, a win in the conference, a win in the Eastern Division, and against a good Vanderbilt team.
On Connor Shaw
I thought he had a heck of a game. He's really a good passer. We gave him a game ball, we thought he was deserving of a game ball. Dylan [Thompson] was seven of nine and played well his couple of times in there. I thought the backs ran pretty well, Connor was the leading rusher, 19 carries and 84 yards. This might have been the best we've ever looked on offense since I've been here, in the first quarter anyways and then it started slowing down a little bit. But we'll learn from it and try to see what kind of team we're going to be this year.
On how he feels about having a bye week
I wouldn't mind playing Austin Peay this week. You laugh but sometimes when you play a game like that everybody gets to play and everybody feels pretty good, you sort of regroup and its not a knock out drag down game. We've had three in a row now, we got some good fortune against North Carolina too. But anyway, we'll take a little time off and try to regroup. We have to try and stop the run better, although they didn't get that many yards. Good win for us, we're all happy.
On when in the second half he noticed things getting away from them
I got really upset when we got that holding penalty right in front of our bench. Bruce [Ellington] had made first down, so we go backwards and then we get a procedure penalty and then we almost make it. We got fourth and two, we're up 25 points and then we kick a 15 yarder. The next play they ran and they were right there. I was just telling myself why don't you go for fourth and one or two, if you don't make it they're going to be right back down there maybe in two or three plays. I got a little irritated then and of course the two turnover plays. That made us a little antsy but we had to go play and finish it out.
Defensive Coordinator Lorenzo Ward
On tonight's defensive performance
We played better. Some situations occurred that we could be better in so we will address some of those issues and make sure teams can't run the football and we have to key in on the quarterback.
On coming out strong and pressuring the quarterback
We just tried to get back to the basics. I think that I started doing too many things with the young guys so we just tried to go back to the basics and play football and do some of the things that we have done here for a long time.
On the changes that paid off tonight
I think it really helped that we went back to keeping it simple. I've got young linebackers, I realize that, so we just have to give them some easy assignments and let them use their athletic ability.
On how much freedom Jadeveon Clowney had to move around on the defensive line
He had a lot of freedom. We told him, especially in the second half, that we needed him to move around. We put him on the nose guard so he played on both sides.
On being encourage this week compared to last
I am completely encouraged. Anytime you win it is encouraging and the biggest stat of the entire night was that we held them to 2-for-12 on third downs. If we can get off of the field on third down then you see what our offense can do.
Bruce Ellington • WR • Junior
On focusing on scoring more this year than you did last year
We are just going out there and doing what we have to do and the defense is going out there and doing what they have to do. We don't really worry about the defense we just try to focus on what the offense is doing.
On what was different tonight compared to the previous two games
The ball was just coming my way. The last few games it has been going to Nick (Jones) and Shaq (Roland) I guess today was just my turn. The coaches have been telling us to run our routes like every ball will come to you and that's what I did today. Connor (Shaw) made some great passes and it just worked out.
On Connor Shaw's performance tonight
He did well throwing and running the ball and as a defense you have to watch that. It is hard to play against a quarterback that can throw and run. He has been coming to practice and stepping up and being a leader and coming out everyday to work. He has gotten his confidence back and he is stepping up and making plays.
Mike Davis • TB • Sophomore
On winning 13 straight at home
I would say it is because of our fans that come out and support us. They yell and scream and so we do the best we can for them.
On having added pressure to have long runs and score on a regular basis
I wanted another long run. Those are the things I look for and try to get highlight runs to make the crowd go crazy. I really did want a long run bad, and I guess I could have had a long run receiving instead.
Connor Shaw • QB • Senior
On the offense
This is what we hoped for - come out hot, coming out of the gate. We're playing well. We jumped on them quick, and I thought we played solid in the first half.
On pressure to score because of the defense
Our defense hasn't played terrible. I mean, we put them in bad circumstances tonight in the second half. We gave them great field positions and careless turnovers. It's not like our defense is playing bad. Against Georgia could they have played better? Yes, but they'll learn from it, and it's not like they played bad tonight by any means.
On improving as a passer
I feel like I do. I told the receivers this week that I was going to let it fly this week, and I'm really proud of our guys up front. We haven't given any sacks. Our receivers made great plays on the sideline.
On Dylan Thompson rubbing off on him
I think he has. It's a great relationship. It's my senior year, and I'm just having fun playing football.
Brandon Wilds • TB • Sophomore
On the offense
We did good, everybody coming together as one, all clicking. We played good together.
On Mike Davis and him
We go out there everyday and just compete with each other, and that's how we get better. If he goes in for a long run, then I have to go in and do the same and vice versa.
Jadeveon Clowney • DE • Junior
On his sack and fumble
I'm doing my job. That's what we talk about, doing your job and come around the edge. We're going to put the move on the offensive lineman and make a play.
On Chaz Sutton and Kelcy Quarles stepping up
It was very nice. I talk to them every day, every practice. I mean I just tell them it's time for them to shine and that they have to do their part, step up and be a leader and a playmaker.
Jimmy Legree • CB • Senior
On his interception
When the receiver came out, he had a wide split. It is really rare that he would run fade with that wide of a split. So I thought that the only route that he would run there was a slant. So I just took a chance, and that is what he ran, so I made the play.
His role on the defense
I feel like my job as a leader is to motivate the young guys that are coming up. Sometimes they get down on themselves about not playing too much, and I just tell them to wait their turn, keep your head up and come out to practice and compete and have fun with it. That play, I felt like I kind of sealed the deal and it felt good. It was just a good call and good execution, and it worked.