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South Carolina's Texas A&M depth chart

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Five new starters and a handful of position changes headline the shake-ups in the Gamecocks' first depth chart of the 2014 season.

Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

Brison Williams to cornerback finally seems real

If, like me, you thought the notion of Brison Williams playing cornerback was mostly an idle threat, it might be time to reconsider. For the first time, the senior defensive back is listed at the top of the depth chart at cornerback, supplanting former walk-on Sidney Rhodes (phew).

Of course, how Williams performs in this new role will be of great interest. At 5'11, 208 pounds, Williams is still stockier than most cornerbacks. During the 2013 season was often photographed with something of a belly protruding from beneath his jersey -- an admirable quality, to be sure, but not one often found among cornerbacks.

CB 12 Brison Williams 5'11 208 SR-3L Warner Robins, Ga.
3 Chris Lammons 5'10 172 FR-HS Sunrise, Fla.
30 Sidney Rhodes 5'10 182 SR-2L Easley, S.C.

The decision to move Williams is doubtless made easier by South Carolina's depth at his previous position, strong safety. Chris Moody and J.J. Marcus each logged significant playing time in 2013. Perhaps the biggest surprise in this reshuffling is that Moody's fall camp performance would seem to have been strong enough to vault him over Marcus, a redshirt senior.

SS 6 Chris Moody 6'1 210 SO-1L McDonough, Ga.
25 Kadetrix Marcus 6'1 194 SR-2L Stone Mountain, Ga.

Matulis injury leads to reshuffling of offensive line

Considering the string of injuries Mike Matulis fought through to work his way back into the starting lineup, the news that he might miss all of 2014 with a knee injury is a punch to the gut. But the good news for South Carolina is that there is plenty of offensive line talent to go around in Columbia. Cody Waldrop slides over from center to take over starting right guard duties. (No word yet on if this will require him to forfeit his status as a Rimington Award watch list member.)

RG 51 Cody Waldrop 6'2 309 SO-1L Seffner, Fla.
70 Alan Knott 6'4 280 FR-RS Tyrone, Ga.

At center, Clayton Stadnik, who split starting duties with Waldrop in 2013, finds himself in a battle with the ascendant Will Sport. The OR separating Stadnik and Sport is one of the biggest surprises of the preseason. The former two-star prospect (Sport) appears to be a legitimate threat to unseat the other former two-star prospect (Stadnik).

C 54 Clayton Stadnik 6'3 273 SO-1L Greensboro, N.C.
OR 75 Will Sport 6'5 291 JR-2L Milton, Fla.

Seven freshmen make their debut appearance on the two-deep

Shaq Davidson, Terry Googer, Deebo Samuel, Chris Lammons, Wesley Green, Bryson Allen-Williams, and Al Harris, Jr. are each making their first appearance on a South Carolina depth chart. The three receivers are, as expected, buried behind several more experienced pass-catchers. Allen-Williams is in a similar situation at linebacker, though he's expected to earn early playing time as a BOB (hybrid outside linebacker/defensive end in the Gamecocks' new 3-4 defensive package).

The cornerbacks, though, are being thrust into the spotlight on day one. Long-held suspicions were confirmed when Al Harris, Jr. was named a starting cornerback. Despite his NFL bloodlines, few thought Harris would beat out Lammons and Green for a starting spot in week one when the Gamecocks' signed their star-studded cornerback class in February.

CB 12 Brison Williams 5'11 208 SR-3L Warner Robins, Ga.
3 Chris Lammons 5'10 172 FR-HS Sunrise, Fla.
30 Sidney Rhodes 5'10 182 SR-2L Easley, S.C.
CB 31 Al Harris, Jr. 5'11 162 FR-HS Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
1 Rico McWilliams 5'11 184 SO-1L Hampton, Ga.
7 Wesley Green 5'10 176 FR-HS Lithonia, Ga.

Other changes

Senior offensive lineman Cody Gibson moves from backup tackle to tight end. At 6'7, 278 pounds, one would assume that he means to take over the role of Gargantuan Blocking Tight End previously occupied by Mason Zandi.

TE 81 Rory Anderson 6'5 227 SR-3L Powder Springs, Ga.
89 Jerell Adams 6'6 242 JR-2L Pinewood, S.C.
90 Cody Gibson 6'7 278 SR-3L Tallahassee, Fla.
88 Drew Owens 6'6 238 JR-1L Charlotte, N.C.

Most South Carolina fans had Kaiwan Lewis penciled in as the Gamecocks' starting middle linebacker for the next two seasons, but T.J. Holloman had something else in mind. Holloman and Lewis split starting duties in 2013, with Lewis coming on strong toward the end of the season.

MLB 11 T.J. Holloman 6'2 234 SO-1L Stone Mountain, Ga.
8 Kaiwan Lewis 6'0 228 JR-2L Mays Landing, N.J.
21 Marcquis Roberts 6'1 216 SO-1L Powder Springs, Ga.

Not pictured

The following players were listed on South Carolina's preseason depth chart but were excluded from the Texas A&M depth chart: Devin Washington, DJ Park, Gerald Turner (moved from defensive end/linebacker to fullback), Mike Matulis (injury), Jamari Smith (injury), Ali Groves, and Brendan Nosovitch (position change).

Offense

WR 4 Shaq Roland 6'1 176 JR-2L Lexington, S.C.

1 Damiere Byrd 5'9 170 SR-3L Sicklerville, N.J.
8 Shamier Jeffery 6'1 198 JR-1L St. Matthews, S.C.
14 Shaq Davidson 5'11 170 FR-HS Gaffney, S.C.
WR 11 Pharoh Cooper 6'1 201 SO-1L Havelock, N.C.

80 K.J. Brent 6'4 192 JR-2L Waxhaw, N.C.
9 Deebo Samuel 6'0 192 FR-HS Inman, S.C.
WR 3 Nick Jones 5'7 168 SR-3L Moore, S.C.
83 Carlton Heard 6'0 188 JR-SQ Athens, Ga.
85 Kane Whitehurst 5'11 169 JR-1L Duluth, Ga.
19 Terry Googer 6'4 210 FR-HS Atlanta, Ga.
LT 53 Corey Robinson 6'8 344 SR-2L Havelock, N.C.
74 Mason Zandi 6'9 301 SO-1L Irmo, S.C.
LG 50 A.J. Cann 6'4 311 SR-3L Bamberg, S.C.
75 Will Sport 6'5 291 JR-2L Milton, Fla.
C 54 Clayton Stadnik 6'3 273 SO-1L Greensboro, N.C.
OR 75 Will Sport 6'5 291 JR-2L Milton, Fla.
RG 51 Cody Waldrop 6'2 309 SO-1L Seffner, Fla.
70 Alan Knott 6'4 280 FR-RS Tyrone, Ga.
RT 71 Brandon Shell 6'6 333 JR-2L Goose Creek, S.C.
55 Na'Ty Rodgers 6'5 280 FR-RS Waldor, Md.
TE 81 Rory Anderson 6'5 227 SR-3L Powder Springs, Ga.
89 Jerell Adams 6'6 242 JR-2L Pinewood, S.C.
90 Cody Gibson 6'7 278 SR-3L Tallahassee, Fla.
88 Drew Owens 6'6 238 JR-1L Charlotte, N.C.
QB 17 Dylan Thompson 6'3 218 SR-3L Boling Springs, S.C.
10 Perry Orth 6'1 204 SO-SQ Ponte Vedra, Fla.
6 Connor Mitch 6'3 211 FR-RS Raleigh, N.C.
FB 41 Connor McLaurin 6'0 243 SR-2L Raleigh, N.C.
31 Jordan Diaz 6'1 236 SR-1L Hamilton, N.J.
TB 28 Mike Davis 5'9 223 JR-2L Atlanta, Ga.
22 Brandon Wilds 6'2 222 JR-2L Blythewood, S.C.
7 Shon Carson 5'8 201 JR-1L Scranton, S.C.
33 David Williams 6'1 214 FR-RS Philadelphia, Pa.

Defense

DE 44 Gerald Dixon 6'2 274 SO-1L Rock Hill, S.C.
34 Mason Harris 6'3 235 JR-2L Fort Oglethorpe, Ga.
DT 97 J.T. Surratt 6'2 274 SR-1L Winston-Salem, N.C.
52 Phillip Dukes 6'3 323 JR-2L Manning, S.C.
93 Deon Green 6'4 289 SO-SQ Windemere, Fla.
DT 92 Gerald Dixon, Jr. 6'3 323 JR-2L Rock Hill, S.C.
99 Abu Lamin 6'4 302 SO-TR Fayetteville, N.C.
94 Kelsey Griffin 6'2 310 SO-1L Buford, Ga.
DE 5 Darius English 6'6 241 SO-1L Powder Springs, Ga.
55 David Johnson 6'1 275 FR-RS Lithonia, Ga.
18 Cedrick Cooper 6'2 225 JR-2L Lithonia, Ga.
MLB 11 T.J. Holloman 6'2 234 SO-1L Stone Mountain, Ga.
8 Kaiwan Lewis 6'0 228 JR-2L Mays Landing, N.J.
21 Marcquis Roberts 6'1 216 SO-1L Powder Springs, Ga.
WLB 10 Skai Moore 6'2 213 SO-1L Cooper City, Fla.
28 Jonathan Walton 6'0 228 SO-1L Daphne, Ala.
4 Bryson Allen-Williams 6'1 231 FR-HS Ellenwood, Ga.
SPR 9 Sharrod Golightly 5'10 187 SR-3L Decatur, Ga.
42 Jordan Diggs 6'0 217 SO-1L Fort Myers, Fla.
32 Larenz Bryant 6'0 220 SO-1L Charlotte, N.C.
CB 12 Brison Williams 5'11 208 SR-3L Warner Robins, Ga.
3 Chris Lammons 5'10 172 FR-HS Sunrise, Fla.
30 Sidney Rhodes 5'10 182 SR-2L Easley, S.C.
SS 6 Chris Moody 6'1 210 SO-1L McDonough, Ga.
25 Kadetrix Marcus 6'1 194 SR-2L Stone Mountain, Ga.
FS 17 Chaz Elder 6'2 195 SO-1L Union City, Ga.
20 T.J. Gurley 5'10 194 JR-2L Cairo, Ga.
26 Jasper Sasser 6'0 203 FR-RS Jacksonville, Fla.
CB 31 Al Harris, Jr. 5'11 162 FR-HS Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
1 Rico McWilliams 5'11 184 SO-1L Hampton, Ga.
7 Wesley Green 5'10 176 FR-HS Lithonia, Ga.

Special Teams

KO 19 Landon Ard 5'9 178 JR-1L Rock Hill, S.C.
29 Elliott Fry 6'0 165 SO-1L Frisco, Texas
PK 29 Elliott Fry 6'0 165 SO-1L Frisco, Texas
19 Landon Ard 5'9 178 JR-1L Rock Hill, S.C.
P 13 Tyler Hull 6'2 207 SR-2L Mount Airy, N.C.
18 Patrick Fish 6'0 194 SR-1L Shelby, N.C.
KR 11 Pharoh Cooper 5'11 201 SO-1L Havelock, N.C.
PR 11 Pharoh Cooper 5'11 201 SO-1L Havelock, N.C.
SSN 58 Ryland Culbertson 6'4 267 SR-1L Laurens, S.C.
LSN 47 Drew Williams 6'2 201 SO-1L Irmo, S.C.
H 18 Patrick Fish 6'0 194 SR-1L Shelby, N.C.
13 Tyler Hull 6'2 207 SR-2L Mount Airy, N.C.