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Shawn Elliot Tuesday Press Conference: Avoiding it

The South Carolina Gamecocks try to put behind their embarrassing loss to The Citadel and get ready to host the nation's top ranked team. Shawn Elliot spoke with the media about the Gamecocks frame of mind heading into rivalry week.

Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

It is never a good thing. Times are bad when it happens. It happens on all levels and in all sports. The Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings just did it after stumbling out the gates to start the NBA season. And the South Carolina Gamecocks football team just did it after a loss to an FCS opponent.

It is a player's only meeting.

Shawn Elliot revealed to the media this afternoon of the Gamecocks coming to terms with reality after their first loss to an FCS team in 25 years. As Elliot said, the Gamecocks faced the facts. Which, right now for a 3-8 team, are pretty dim.

When asked about the challenge of overcoming such a disheartening reality as the one the Gamecocks face, Elliot responded with nothing but optimism.

The mood of our football team is very good, if you can imagine that...We told them we are going to enjoy this week. Our team responded. They actually wanted to talk themselves and get a few things off their chest to each other. We allowed them to do that. It wasn't a private players meeting or anything like that, but they just wanted to say some things.

While the interim coach may insist his players didn't hold a private meeting, it most certainly had the feeling of one. And Elliot thinks it may have worked.

When they came out of that meeting you can kind of look at an individual and tell if they got it or not and I think everyone got it.

The Gamecocks have nothing to look forward to after Saturday. No bowl trip on the horizon. Likely no postseason award ceremonies for many players. And widespread uncertainty across the coaching staff. This Saturday will be the last appearance from this particular Gamecock team as we know it.

Knocking off Clemson and ruining what has been so far a magical season for the Tigers, is this team's toughest test all season and the last hope of which they have to play for. Right now for Gamecock nation, the notion of 4-8 is far more magical and uplifting than any undefeated season could bring.