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South Carolina Gamecocks practice recap: Connor Mitch not the only starter named

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Mitch's relative longer tenure with the team was one of the deciding factors in him getting the starting role, per the HBC. Also, Whammy Ward announced his starters at DE.

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

First, the big story...

So if you weren't aware...Connor Mitch is the Gamecocks' starting quarterback. The move was first announced in a team meeting today, according to GamecockCentral.com, and the North Carolina native was obviously thrilled with the news. "We're going to support him and give him every chance to be the quarterback the entire year," said Steve Spurrier, who noted that the quarterback competition was "extremely close" but that Mitch "was slightly ahead" of the other candidates.

Connor Mitch in his own words

Mitch obviously was thrilled with the news that he'd be starting, and showed an anxiousness to "go to work".

"It was a coach’s decision but I think I put in a lot of work and effort this past fall camp," Mitch told the assembled media. "Hopefully it made the decision a little easier."

Mitch does know several Tar Heel players (having played against, and possibly with, some of them in high school) and understandably looked forward to seeing them once more. One of those players: Jordan Fieulleteau, a former wideout at Wakefield that was one of Mitch's favorite targets: he was recruited as one of the top 50 WR prospects in his class and led the country in touchdown catches as a junior and senior.

Defensive end starters named

Gamecocks DC Lorenzo Ward officially announced who would start at defensive end. Unsurprisingly, Qua Lewis will be one, joined down the line by Cedrick Cooper. Gerald Dixon had been slotted ahead of David Johnson at the other end, but the staff decided to award the job to the redshirt senior; however, we should see plenty of Dixon in the rotation when the Gamecocks play North Carolina a week from Thursday. JUCO transfer Dante Sawyer, recruited as a DE, will slide to the DT spot and will challenge for a starting role there.