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Our Digital Season: Week 12 - South Carolina v. South Alabama

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It's the DigiCocks vs. the DigiJaguars!

Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports

Hello, faithful ODS reader. You might have noticed we didn't post an ODS last week. You probably don't especially care, either, since things went so well IRL for once this dang season. But in case you require an explanation, I was out of town most of the week and simply couldn't carve out an hour to pull this thing together. In the interest of being thorough, I quick-simmed the SC/UF game and Florida won 45-28. So really I spared you additional anxiety. You're welcome.

We move ahead. The DigiJaguars are not particularly good, according to this game or actual statistics (USA has the fifth-worst offense in the nation, according to F/+) so hopefully the Cocks both Digi- and IRL- can run away. BUT WILL THEY?

USA wins the toss and will receive.

1st Quarter, or UH

The opening kickoff is brought out to the 24. 1st and 10. Pass is complete to Saxton for 3 yards. It's Shaverez Smith who nabs it for 18 on 2nd. 1st and 10 nearing midfield. Incomplete. Pass to the flat is complete, but gains nothing. Pass to Saxton is caught, but he steps out. It's 4th and 6, and USA will punt from midfield. And boy is it a good punt—it trickles out of bounds at the 4.

Offset-I on first down, and Davis runs for 7. Thompson passes incomplete on 2nd, and checks down on 3rd, but Davis won't gain enough. 4th and 2 and Hull will punt from his own endzone, which is a troubling thing to read isn't it? Punt is returned to the SC 46.

QB Brandon Bridge hasn't been pressured once—he completes it to Saxton for 7. Middle screen falls incomplete. Bridge keeps it on a zone read and gains 9. 1st and 10 at the SC 30. Quick 12 as Bridge finds Jones. Sweep to Houston gains 7 more. Again it's Houston, who drags DigiSkai Moore some six yards into the end zone.

7-0, Jaguars. Yikes.

Kickoff returned to the 20. Dylan's pass on 1st and 10 is almost picked. Delayed give to Davis gains nothing. Dylan hits Roland underneath and gains 3. Consecutive 3 and outs to start the game. Punt.

USA begins the drive on its own 42. Pass to Jones gains 4. Zone read keeper, but Surratt gets to the backfield and gets Bridge for a loss of 2. Delayed give to Jones gains 6, and the Jags will punt. Punt taken by Cooper for a short gain. SC will start the drive at its own 25.

Dylan finds Jones over the middle for 12. He then scrambles for 12 of his own. Hey, yardage! Ball just shy of midfield. Dylan with plenty of time—finally finds Shaq Roland for a gain of 24. And then it's Nick Jones who makes the diving catch near the corner for a gain of 27! 1st and goal from the 2. The give is to Davis, and he runs in untouched.

7-7.

Touchback. Delayed give on 1st gains just 1. Saxton then attempts to scramble, but DigiDixon is there for the sack! 3rd and long. Cocks blitz just 3, and Bridge has time—he airs one downfield, and Elder just misses the pick. Incomplete though, and the DigiJags will punt. Cooper returns it 14 yards, across midfield.

1st and 10. Dylan drops back and finds Byrd for 11. Play action, and again it's to Byrd for 17 more. Mike Davis gets the give on 1st, but he only gets back to the line. 5 wide on 2nd, and Dylan finds Shamier Jeffery for a gain of 11. 1st and goal at the 8, and that's how the quarter will end.

2nd Quarter, or YOU GET A PICK AND YOU GET A PICK

Dylan drops back, and sits in the pocket for an epoch before being sacked for a loss of 8. Dylan dumps it off to Jerell Adams, who has to come back and get it. Just a 2 yard gain—2 more on 3rd, so it's 4th and goal. Freisman will have to chip in the field goal, which he does.

10-7. A moral victory for USA, whose defense had been on life support for the better part of 2 drives.

1st and 10 from the SC 24. DigiBridge keeps it but gains just 2. He senses trouble and throws it away on 2nd. Blitz on 3rd—Bridge throws it into coverage, and this time Chaz Elder does make the pick! South Carolina takes over at the USA 45.

Give to Davis on 1st, and he gains 8. Dylan keeps the zone read on 2nd, but he doesn't see the blitzing linebacker—loss of 4. Big blitz on 3rd down, but Dylan hits Damiere Byrd for a gain of 8. Byrd is down, though. 1st and 10 and the give is to Davis, who bursts ahead for 10. Dylan drops back, looks confused in the pocket, and finally zips one into the hands of a Jaguar defender. The teams exchange picks, and it's 1st and 10, USA, at their own 18.

Play action, and it's a dumpoff to Saxton, but Brison is there for the tackle—no gain. Bridge is pressured on 2nd, and Brison drops a pick six. 3rd and 10. Bridge throws deep on 3rd, and this time it's Rico McWilliams who makes the pick—he returns it all the way to the USA 36.

Mike Davis on 1st, and what a run—he hurdles and stiffarms his way to the 5. Gain of 21. He gains just 1 on the next play, and it's 2nd and goal. I formation. It's a give to McLaurin, and he gets to about the 1 inch line. I form again, and it's the same play. This time, McLaurin scores.

17-7, South Carolina.

Touchback. Bridge gets good protection and connects with McGee for 11. But then it's Gerald Dixon Jr. with the sack on 1st—loss of 3. And then it's the other Gerald Dixon, for his 2nd sack! It's now 3rd and 19. And wouldn't you know it—another pick! This time it's Ali Groves (he still plays for us, right?) SC takes over at the USA 38.

Dylan tries his hardest to reciprocate—the pick is dropped on 1st down. He does find Jones for 8 on 2nd down, so it's 3rd and 2. Pass to Cooper on the sideline gains 11. Dylan Thompson keeps it on 1st—and he finds a seam! A 20 yard gain, and he's down at the 1. Weirdly, they run a jet sweep to Damiere, and he loses 1 yard. This time they wise up and let Davis run it in for the easy score.

24-7, South Carolina. 1:43 remains in the half.

The Carolina defense comes out, having ended the past 3 drives with interceptions. Gain of 5 on 1st. Pass on 2nd is incomplete, and it's 3rd and 5. It's a halfback draw, and it works—Jones runs for 13. 1st and 10. This time it's a pass to Jones, and he gains 13. Then to Saxton for 18. USA is moving, now at the SC 27 yard line. Bridge then scrambles for 16, and USA is 10 yards out. But Kendall Houston is taken down for a loss. Birdge scrambles for 6, and then is sacked by Dixon Jr. for a loss of 4! Which Gerald Dixon will finish with more sacks, I wonder? Anyway, USA tacks on the field goal as the half expires.

24-10, South Carolina.

FIRST HALF ANALYSIS

The South Carolina defense has looked incredible mostly, but helpless enough at times to allow 10 points. Same goes for the offense, which has scored 4 times in 4 red zone trips (3 TD, 1 FG) but two 3 and outs and an interception have limited what could have been a scorefest of a first half. South Carolina gets it to start the 2nd half.

3rd Quarter, or PULLIN' AWAY

Kickoff taken all the way to the 35. I formation on 1st down. Delayed give to Davis, and he finds a big hole—it's a 19 yard gain! Dylan will throw on second, and wheeew does he just thread the needle to Damiere Byrd for a nice gain. 1st and 10 on the USA 29. Delayed give, and Davis gains 5. He's got 74 yards on 11 touches. Another delayed give, this time to Wilds, and he gains 6, enough to move the chains. 1st and 10 and Dylan finds Roland on the comeback route. He turns and leaps towards the endzone, falling just shy so it's 1st and goal at the 2. I formation and—Dylan drops back, why. Incomplete. I formation again. This time it's that mystical fullback dive that we never use IRL, and McLaurin scores his second touchdown of the day.

31-10, South Carolina.

After the touchback, a give on 1st down gains just 2, but Jones follows that with a 10 yard gain. Pass to Saxton on 1st gains 6. Bubble screen to Smith works, gains 10. It's 1st and 10 at the SC 47. Then Bridge on the zone read keeper gains 14. He drops back on 1st, sees nothing, and scrambles for 10—defense is reeling. After a 1 yard gain on 1st, Bridge drops back for the halfback screen, but Gerald Dixon gets to him before he can get rid of it! That's sack #3 for Gerald—your move, Gerald Dixon Jr. Another screen pass does get off, but gains just 2. South Alabama will settle for a field goal—it's good.

31-13, South Carolina.

Kickoff taken by Carson to the 29. South Carolina has touchdowns on its past 3 drives. 4 more for Davis on 1st down. Davis gets it again, and gains 6 and the 1st. This time Dylan keeps it and gains 8. It would seem the dang ball is getting ran. Davis gets just one on 2nd, and it's 3rd and 1 at midfield. Dylan keeps it and fools the defense—reminds me of something—and gains 10! Dylan drops back for the first time this drive, and finds Nick Jones for a gain of 10. Dylan loses a yard on 2nd and short, but then finds Shaq Roland on the post—caught, and he's got daylight ahead of him! Touchdown.

38-13, South Carolina.

1st and 10 at the SC 22. Bridge has time, but no one open—finally throws it away. Pass to Woodson on 3rd gains 6. Whammy throws the house at Bridge on 3rd, and it pays off—Moore with the sack! 3 and out go the Jags, and Cooper will take the punt out the USC 48.

1st and 10 and Dylan keeps it on the zone read, but is taken down behind the line for a 3 yard loss. 5 wide on 2nd, and it's Dylan to Shamier for a 12 yard gain. 3rd and 1, and Dylan keeps it—he's swarmed but somehow cuts through for the 1st down. I formation on 1st and it's a give to Davis, who gains a strong 8 as the clock hits zeroes in the 3rd.

4th Quarter, or GARBAGE TIME

After a 4 yard rush by Thompson to move the chains, Davis gets 2 and 10 on consecutive runs. 1st and 10 at the USA 11. Dylan then keeps it and scrambles for 9.5—he's up to 51 for the day. 2nd and inches. Dylan keeps it again, and powers (lol) in for the score.

45-13, South Carolina.

Kickoff taken to the USA 28. Bridge with time, and he hits Saxton underneath for 8, them Smith for 4. Incomplete on 1st, and then a gain of just 2 on 2nd makes it 3rd and long. But a nice touch pass to Jones is jsut enough for the 1st down. And then it's the Jags' first big play of the game—a 40 yard reception for Woodson puts it inside the 5. Bridge then scrambles it in for the Jags' first touchdown since the first quarter.

45-20. They'll attempt an onside kick, but the Cocks recover it. 4:48 remains.

1st and 10 at the USA 45. Give to Davis gains 12—he's now up to 118 yards for the day. Dylan drops back and hits Jerell for another 2 yard gain—he's got 2 receptions for 4 yards. Zone read give on 2nd, but it's ill-advised as Davis loses 2. A 3 yard reception for Davis will make it 4th and 9. Fry on to try the 49 yarder—and he'll get it!

48-20, South Carolina.

Touchback, so South Alabama will need to march 75 yards. Bridge scrambles for 9.5 on 1st—he's burned South Carolina several times with his feet. Give to Jones gains the other .5, and it's a 1st down. Pass for 7 on 1st—and then it's Gerald Dixon with his 4th sack of the day! 3rd and 7. Bridge is pressured, and he wings it—intercepted! This time it's Kadetrix Marcus. SC takes over at the USA 49.

Davis gains 2 on 1st. South Carolina bleeding clock fiercely. Another give to Davis, and he breaks three tackles for a 5 yard gain. This time it's a give to Davis, and he barrels ahead for 15. Then Davis gains 11 more. Ball on the 16 yard line. I formation. Davis gains nothing on what will be the last play of the game.

Final Score: 48-20, South Carolina.

It wasn't perfect, but I think most of us would take a 48-20 blowout that featured 4 interceptions and 7 sacks from this year's SC defense.

USA STAT USC
192 PASS YDS 228
83 RUSH YDS 211
275 TOTAL YDS 438
3/13 3RD DOWN CONV 8/12
4 INT TURNOVERS 1 INT
35% TOP 65%
J. Jones: 6 CAR, 32 YDS, 5 REC, 33 YDS Offensive POTG M. Davis: 23 CAR, 132 YDS, 2 TD, 2 REC, 5 YDS
D. Lavelle: 11 TACK, 2 TFL Defensive POTG G. Dixon: 4 TACK, 4 TFL, 4 SACKS

The Geralds Dixon combine for 6 sacks, 4 different players snag a pick, and the defense posts a sub-300 yard performance. Given USA's offensive futility, maybe we can match it IRL. Next week's Clemson week. Start sippin' that digiHaterade.