April 26, 2013

Spring rewind: South Carolina

COLUMBIA, S.C. - Even given Steve Spurrier's reputation for being an offensive coach, his first teams at South Carolina were not known for working the scoreboard, never hitting the 30 points-per-game average during his first five seasons patrolling the sidelines. Spurred by a combination of several factors, the Gamecock offense has improved to average 30 points per game or better for the past three seasons. The highest mark under Spurrier came last season, during the 2012 11-win campaign in which USC averaged 31.5 points per contest.

Among the changes made over the course of the past three seasons: a new offensive line coach in Shawn Elliott who introduced zone read elements brought over from Appalachian State, more input from G.A. Mangus (a quarterbacks coach who himself is a former head coach and offensive coordinator) as well as Steve Spurrier Jr., a record-setting running back in Marcus Lattimore, and better talent across the board. How much credit each of those deserves up for discussion, but the fact remains that South Carolina's production on offense has been better lately, and there is reason to think that the 2013 version of the Gamecock offense could be the best ever under Spurrier in Columbia.

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