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Tuesday tidbits: Will Muschamp talks weather, Marshall

We THINK there will be a game on Saturday.

Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

The South Carolina Gamecocks are done licking their wounds after Georgia and are moving on to this week’s game against visiting Marshall. (Well, provided Hurricane Florence doesn’t have anything to say about it.) Coach Will Muschamp sat down for his weekly press conference and shared some insight on how the Gamecocks are putting their first loss behind them. The highlights:

On Marshall

“Offense, schematically, very similar to us — especially in the run game. Got a a lot of respect for Coach Holiday and the jobhe has done on Marshall. Defensively, they are really fast. They’ve got nine starters back from a year ago. They play really well in space. They’ve got a nice pressure package and we’ve got to be dialed in and focused on the different looks that they give you. ... Special teams, a lot of good team speed. We’re gonna have to play well in space and certainly step our game up.”

On the weather

“We’re in great hands in this state with Governor McMaster and President Pastides here at the university and Coach Tanner. I’m preparing for a football game, and obviously my thoughts and prayers are with the people on our coast and the North Carolina coast and whoever this storm may affect.”

On injuries other than D.J. Wonnum, who will be out for a month with his sprained ankle

“Everybody’s good. ... Chavis Dawkins is back. He practiced today and looked good, practiced Sunday night moved well. Mon [Denson] is probably 85 percent and can help us.”

On the offense and what needs to improve

“We were very efficient in our first ball game and then we needed to play better last week. We will continue to press forward with what we’re doing. I do like the fact that we’re able to play at a faster tempo. We’ve utilized that and it’s been effective. We needed to run the ball more last week. When you call RPOs and you’re reading the linebacker and he flows and you end up throwing the ball, you had a called run. And sometimes you get a little out of whack numbers-wise as you’re calling the game, and that’s something we need to do a better job paying attention to.”

On the tackling woes

“We did miss some tackles, but normally that happens against good people. At the end of the day, we didn’t communicate very well, which puts you in position to not make the tackle. To me, it was more of a communication issue, an urgency to align issue, as much as anything else. ... We need to get the call. We need to relay the call throughout the entire defense. ... Our crowd was awesome, they gave us a great boost, but we’ve got to communicate better.”

On conversations he had with offensive coordinator Bryan McClendon

“There’s nobody that’s more hard on himself than Bryan. I can tell you that. At the end of the day, we had 200 yards at halftime against a really good defense. We just need to be more effective. But it’s a team game — defensively, we had three possessions in the second half that were 21 points. We gave up huge chunk plays in the passing game. ... That wasn’t the offense’s fault. And then you’re battling the 8-ball against a really good defense trying to play catch-up. We got away from the run game then for obvious reasons. ... First thing he [McClendon] said was, ‘I need to be more hard-headed with the run game.’ ”

More about defensive miscues

“The first thing you got to do as a coach is look in the mirror and say, ‘Are we doing too much?’ We had a lot of mental errors. We’ve scaled back. ... We obviously had way too many mistakes. We’ll continue to improve and hopefully let them play faster and react instead of thinking.”

On the effort against Georgia

“I don’t think we need to confuse not playing well and not trying. We tried. Our guys played hard. Our guys fought their butts off in the first half to put themselves in a good position. We didn’t come out the second half — we got blocked and didn’t respond well defensively. Our guys played hard in the game. We didn’t get the results we wanted.”


The Gamecocks will have wet ball periods in practice tomorrow and Thursday to simulate possible weather conditions on Saturday. ... Bryson Allen-Williams will play more at the buck position with Wonnum’s absence, as well as Danny Fennell and Brad Johnson.