Responding to the start
The Gamecocks were in a bad spot after a pick-six and fast touchdown drive put them in a 14-0 hole. They managed to make it a one-score game for a while, and held, for the most part, until halftime.
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The precocious freshman got in some good reps throughout the game, finishing with a pair of catches for 29 yards.
The trick play touchdown
Georgia had gone hard to blow up the jet sweep to Deebo Samuel the first time USC ran it. The Gamecocks came back to it, but had him loft a pass over the defense for a 13-yard score.
Not much was lost
The Gamecocks were facing an uphill battle in any context against the Bulldogs, with their loaded roster coming off the College Football Playoff championship game. The loss was highly ugly, but it only counts as one loss.
It’s a weird place to start, but the Gamecocks had three in the first two drives, one of which led to the interception and touchdown. On a day when USC needed to play very well to have a chance, it simply didn’t at the start.
Jake Bentley overall
His overall production left a good bit to be desired. Throwing 44 passes for 269 yards and a pair of interceptions won’t get it done, and it means he’s thrown three touchdowns and 11 interceptions against Clemson, Georgia and Florida in his career.
Tackling and getting worn down
Georgia has such a talent advantage, it’s going to make a team pay for every missed tackle or even a not-squared-up tackle. The Gamecocks had a lot of those, and gave up 6.7 yards per play.
The run game
South Carolina had struggled mightily to run the ball in the previous two meetings and said getting that on track this year would be a key. USC averaged 2.7 yards per carry and didn’t move the ball well at all.