The South Carolina Gamecocks open SEC play under the lights and between the hedges on Saturday night, taking on the No. 2 Georgia Bulldogs. USC’s last trip to Athens was an unexpectedly great time, but it could take just as much luck — if not more — to earn a similar result this time around. Here’s how the GABA gang sees it all going down.
Kody: I’m just gonna be honest here: The fact that JT Daniels and now Stetson Bennett are both dealing with injuries doesn’t mean a whole lot to me, for a couple reasons: a) the Gamecocks have had a nasty habit of turning third-stringers into Peyton Manning, and b) that Bulldog defense is absolutely one of the most elite units in college football right now. I truthfully can’t even begin to think about what opportunities USC might have on defense or special teams because I keep going back to the nightmare scenario of the porous play of this offensive line matched up with Georgia’s bloodthirsty pass rushers. I really hope the Gamecocks don’t embarrass themselves and find a way to cover that awful spread, but something like a 35-10 Bulldog victory looks like a best case scenario to me.
Sawyer: I don’t really see this one going well. It would take an absolute UGA turnover filled miracle to win this game. I do not see our offense going up and down the field all night and I really do think our defense will struggle a little bit. I think the Gamecocks will make some plays on both sides of the ball, but it just won’t be enough. Georgia is just too fast and strong for us to compete with this year. The offensive line has been a real concern so far this season and the Bulldogs should take full advantage of that. Even with everything against us, I think the Gamecocks beat the spread. 41-17 Dawgs.
Matt: Even if this Gamecock squad was more talented, I would still feel like this game is way too early on the schedule to give USC any kind of a shot. Going from EIU to ECU was like a baby step up in terms of competition, and considering how much the team struggled offensively on the road against the latter, I don’t think the offense will be experienced enough to look competent against a dangerous Georgia defense. I’m going to make a slightly bold prediction and say that South Carolina doesn’t even score a touchdown while its defense keeps the game relatively close but not really. Will the Gamecocks cover the 32-point spread? I say yes, but will this game ever be in jeopardy for Georgia? No. If this game was even two weeks later and the Gamecocks were more battle tested I would be more confident, but this is as close as it gets to throwing a team into the metaphorical fire. Give me 38-9 Georgia.
Katie: As usual I’m here to tell you I think the Gamecocks could win this game. Is it likely? Not really! Is it technically possible? Yes! Sure Georgia is ranked No. 2 and is clearly a very good football team and South Carolina is … a team that barely beat Eastern Carolina BUT any given Saturday, folks!!! I called the USC upset of Alabama in 2010, so I’m just saying, there’s precedent for me being an oracle when it comes to improbable wins. If nothing else, let’s at least score one (1) touchdown so we get more points against the Bulldogs than Clemson did.