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Friday Afternoon Optimist: South Carolina Football

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With the chances of having a winning record waning away, could a fresh face take South Carolina bowling again?

NCAA Football: Georgia at South Carolina Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

South Carolina football has become a shell of its former self. The program’s struggles are especially exemplified by the ten total wins in the last two seasons. But even with the obstacle of avoiding a losing culture and turning around the program, there are some good things going here in Carolina. With two promising freshman quarterbacks, a reinvigorated secondary, and a talented group of underclassmen, success could come sooner rather than later. Even though South Carolina is 2-4, you play twelve games for a reason, and there’s still hope for a late season push to make a bowl game. The man who can possibly take us there: Jake Bentley.

When you buy into a player’s hype, there’s going to be one of two outcomes. The player either under-performs or outperforms the set expectation. For example, look at Brandon McIlwain. With all the pre-season hype setting unattainable expectations, it shouldn’t be that big of a surprise that he fell short of those expectations this early into his young career. By no means does that mean that McIlwain is a bad quarterback, but that he simply isn’t ready to be The Guy for this team. Does that mean that Jake Bentley, who has been heralded as a stand-out passer, is now going to be The Guy, the savior of this team? It’s simply too early to tell. There is one thing that is certain, and that it will take at least another season or two before South Carolina can begin to ascend back into relevance.

One serious reason for optimism is the fast approaching basketball season. After a disappointing end to a promising season, the men's team has a plethora of scoring options, while landing some talented transfers and freshmen in offseason. Although they were picked to finish 8th in the SEC, this team has the talent to be so much more. Who knows, maybe you can catch them playing some meaningful basketball in March.