C&F is about to depart Hoover, and will post a full round-up of today's activities later this evening. But, first, a few things about the South Carolina session that stand out:
--First of all, Jasper Brinkley can dress. Today, he was sporting a garnet suit and cream-colored alligator-skin shoes. Any man that can pull that off and not look like an absolute fool deserves a large sum of cool points. Those are yours, Jasper; you earned them.
--Spurrier does not disappoint in person. The quips are there. The blunt assessments are there. After day after day of pretty typical coach press conferences -- aside, of course, from the Fulmer subpoena or deal -- it's particularly refreshing.
One good line C&F didn't manage to get in the liveblog: "Most of you know, my dady was a preacher. He never lasted 10, 12 years anywhere. It's time for you to move on. So every three or four years, we were moving. They'd already heard all of his sermons, this, that and the other, and there was another place to go."
--The talent level is getting close to where Spurrier wants it to be, at least from what he said, and Kenny McKinley and J-Brink appear to agree. C&F isn't quite sure that it's SEC Championship-caliber yet, though it could be. Spurrier is convinced that the key is better coaching; the players point to better execution. The truth is likely somewhere in between.
--Spurrier still has not cleared up who is calling the plays on offense. Every time he tries to clear it up, he muddies it up. Maybe that's intentional, to keep opponents from knowing who will be calling the plays and somehow get some advantage from that. But Spurrier Jr. is the principal play-caller. At least for today.
--Spurrier seems to be playing things a little closer to the vest this year. He didn't say the team was shooting for the SEC crown this year, but he didn't rule it out. He did seem to think it's rather unlikely.
The players believe, but most players believe; even Wes Carroll of Mississippi State talked about a "14-game schedule," meaning the SEC CG and a bowl game. Good luck with that.
This year should mark an improvement for the Gamecocks; if it doesn't, the Steve Spurrier Experiment will be running out of steam. But dreams of visiting Atlanta for anything other than the Peach Bowl might need to be put on hold for a year or two at least.