The South Carolina Gamecocks (2-1) look to recover from their defeat at the hands of Georgia last week by taking on an undefeated Kentucky Wildcat (3-0) squad. Here are the three keys to a Gamecock win.
By Steve Wright
1 – Stop Wan’Dale Robinson
Kentucky has been a ground and pound team on offense for years, but that has changed this season with a couple of transfers making a big impact on their offense. Quarterback Will Levi has built an instant rapport with wide receiver – and Nebraska transfer – Wan’Dale Robinson, and last week he became the first Wildcat ever with three 100 yard receiving games to start a season. The Gamecocks were bad against the deep ball last week and must find a way to stop Robinson from getting his hands on the ball in the open field.
2 – Turn Kentucky over
Levis has a strong arm, but he sometimes takes too many risks with the ball. Kentucky squeaked past Chattanooga last week as the Mocs took full advantage of Wildcat turnovers. Kentucky has eight of those on the season and sits joint 127th in the country in turnover margin at -6. The Gamecocks have given the ball up six times, but turned over the opposition seven times to sit at 53rd in the country in turnover margin. South Carolina can win this if they are +2 or better on the day in turnovers.
3 – Get Kevin Harris going
It is time for Kevin Harris to get going. Shane Beamer wants to run the ball and he has both the offensive line and the lead running back to do so. Harris has been – predictably – slowed at the start of the year after back surgery, but the 96 yards on 34 carries the Gamecocks put up as a team against Georgia on the ground won’t get it done. Harris tied for the team-high in that game – along with ZaQuandre White – with 31 yards on the ground. Harris, however, has 16 carries and it is up to the star back to start turning those carries into effective gains.