The South Carolina Gamecocks go on their second road trip of the season tomorrow afternoon when they travel to Nashville to face off against the equally winless Vanderbilt Commodores. Both teams have taken lumps from ranked competition to start the season, and are in desperate need to scrap for a win that might not be so easy to find later in the year. How’s how the GABA gang is feeling about it.
SMcDowell93: Look, I know we are 0-2 but I feel like we should beat Vandy? Right? I will probably end up regretting that statement but I do think we have the better team and that our 0-2 records are not created equal. We’ve competed well, for the most part, with two top 25 teams in the first two weeks. Meanwhile Vandy got absolutely throttled by LSU and struggled with an underwhelming Texas A&M squad. Through all of that, Vandy’s offense is averaging a paltry 8.5 PPG. So, while our defense hasn’t exactly been spectacular thus far, I expect Vandy to struggle offensively. I also predicted a breakout performance from Xavier Legette this week on the GABACast. And, if you listened to the podcast you know that I’m predicting a 34-13 victory for the good guys.
Matt: The Gamecocks may be winless, but it won’t be that way anymore after this week. South Carolina lost to two teams that look like some of the best schools in the country. Vanderbilt lost to two ranked teams as well, but we’ve seen both LSU and Texas A&M have gaping holes on their squads. Also, their quarterback, Ken Seals, has FOUR interceptions through two games. If South Carolina doesn’t win this game themselves, I can see Vanderbilt losing it. That’s more of a worst case scenario, though. I have the Cocks taking this one 35-17.
Katie: My sports optimism springs eternal, and this week it’s probably actually valid. South Carolina should absolutely win this football game, and not just because I’ll be super sad if they somehow don’t. That being said, gonna need the receivers to catch the dang ball this week, because y’all, I can’t endure another game full of dropped passes. It would be nice if this could be a tidy win that’s pretty much settled by halftime, but I won’t get greedy. Just do the thing with the winning, fellas.
Adam: Another week, another loss...but I have to admit that I’m enjoying watching this Gamecock team and I kinda like this group of guys. Moral victories aside, this SEC gauntlet is not going to treat us well so South Carolina needs to really savor what could very possibly be our only actual victory in 2020. When I say savor, I mean run up the score. A lot. Give the fans what they deserve, Bobo. Vanderbilt will (eventually) understand. The clock management last week was a coaching disaster that no program should ever have to endure and I have a sneaking suspicion that the new OC was more to blame for that calamity than poor old Muschamp. That’s no disrespect to Bobo - I firmly believe that South Carolina would not have had the luxury of worrying about the clock against THAT Gators team had any of our former OCs been calling the shots...All I’m saying is that I’d like to see Bobo atone for those final minutes by absolutely lighting up the Commodores until the final whistle. 52-20, Fighting Gamecocks.
Kody: I’m gonna make it unanimous and go with a South Carolina victory, because we’re finally not playing a ranked opponent this week. I think the defense has a nice get-right opportunity against a true freshman quarterback, and Kevin Harris could further cement himself as the Gamecocks’ No. 1 back against Vandy’s fairly porous run defense. It’d be great to see the offense get back on track too, especially after mind-numbingly bad clock management last week squandered what could have been the chance at an incredible upset. Of course, this is still the SEC, and we’ve played in plenty of nailbiters and otherwise uncomfortably close games against Vanderbilt before, so I don’t want to get too carried away and assume this will be a walkover. That said, I still don’t see it going down to the wire this year. 28-14, Cocks.