As a huge fan of Steve Spurrier, naturally I had to watch the ESPN 2 telecast of the spring game up at South Carolina. You can check our link here for a more overall analysis but I wanted to offer just a few of my own observation.
1. It is nice to see SOS prowling the sideline of a college football game, even if it is for an in conference rival of my Alma Mater.
2. It is a work in progress, but you could start to see the old pass patterns developing that dominated the SEC for so long. Nice mid-range to deep posts, fades and tons of crossing patterns. Although with Spurrier, it isn't so much the patterns as when he calls for them and how he sets them up that should keep South Carolina fans happy.
3. As usually, the Fun and Gun runs more than people think which a heavy dose of draws, counters and traps. Sumners could have put up nice numbers in this system.
4. The defense looked good and will be much more aggressive in the regular season. John Thompson maybe a touch gimmicky, but gimmicky can work in college when the quarterbacks can't study film 24/7.
5. The quarterback play will determine the success of the Gamecocks this year, no question about it. Unfortunately for them, the quarterbacks are clearly not ready... but they both showed flashes of potential. Blake Mitchell was more consistent and had an awkward looking shot put throwing motion, which old ball coach has had an affinity for in the past, but was unspectacular and not consistent enough. Although Antonio Heffner was a bit more inconsistent, he showed flashes of great potential with an ability to by time in the pocket and nice zip on his passes... he just has to stop missing open receivers. We here at EDSBS.com are absolutely giddy at the thought of a man names Heffner leading Cocks next year (even if the name is spelled slightly differently).
Can he consistently hit the wide open tight end?
Overall, I suspect this season to be on par with or slightly better than last year but I look for good things to come in the following years. Watch out Clemson.