South Carolina's head coach Steve Spurrier admits that this past weekend's game against Georgia falls on the coaching staff.
If South Carolina expects to regroup this weekend at home, they'll have a tough task at hand according to the Head Ball Coach.
"Vanderbilt is a good team," Spurrier said Tuesday afternoon. "James Franklin and his staff really do a good job; they really do. Their players are well disciplined, and they don't make a lot of mistakes in coverages. They are where they are supposed to be all the time."
Spurrier talked about how well Vanderbilt's players are disciplined and make few mistakes on defense but that's the exact opposite South Carolina got from its defense against Georgia.
"But our third down defense was lousy. We can't allow teams to make third-and-15s, fourth-and-12s, stuff like that," as Spurrier laminated on some of the Gamecocks issues this past weekend. "So we have revisited what we're doing on third downs and try to be fundamentally more sound than what we've been doing and try to get our guys in better position because had a bad coaching day against Georgia..."
One of the Gamecocks defensive players that continues to get attention is Jadeveon Cloweny.
However, it's not for what most people have considered to be outstanding play.
Clowney has, for the most part, caused teams to game plan against him these first two weeks of the season which has seen his numbers limited. This past weekend against Georgia, Clowney primarily lined up at the right defensive end position and wasn't moved around on defense until late in the game when it appeared the Bulldogs have control.
Spurrier said that he anticipates being more involved in the defense this week and would have some suggestions for defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward. He even joked on Tuesday about moving five players to the opposite of where Clowney is lined up as a way to anticipate where the offensive play will end up. It should be a credit to Clowney and the Gamecocks that he's universally considered a major threat at defensive end but Spurrier knows the Gamecocks need to make adjustments, get lined up in the right spots and hope the the defense will tackle better and play their gaps better.
"We need to line up on that other side, and put about five guys over there and anticipate that they are going to run over there, that's what we should do, but we couldn't get lined up very well the other day. That's my fault, we couldn't get lined up, and after we get lined up, everybody's got to play their gap a little bit better and do their responsibility and tackle."
While defense is drawing a lot of attention this week, there is one Gamecock on offense who continues to draw attention for the right reason and that's sophomore running back Mike Davis.
Davis added 149 yards on 16 carries with one touchdown and a long run of 75 yards and broke the 100-yard mark for the second straight week. What has been the most surprising part of Davis these past two weeks have been his burst of speed on the long runs of 75 yards each of the last two weeks. Spurrier talked about that on Tuesday as well.
"I have been surprised on the long runs. We haven't had any long runs around here. Marcus (Lattimore) had a few, 30 or 40 yarders, but usually that was about it. But he's had two long ones in two weeks, 75, 75 to the five. Mike's speed was something we didn't really know about until he got ahead of those North Carolina guys and nobody caught him, that's when we realized, hey, he's got some speed and maybe we all didn't know about."
Mike Davis will likely play a key role for the Gamecocks this Saturday but all eyes will be on the defense and how they respond to last week's tough performance against Georgia.
Spurrier tried to keep the goals in place on Tuesday by saying there are a lot of teams that are 1-1 right now and the season is young.
This certainly isn't time to give up hope on the team and Steve Spurrier is hoping the fans show up for what should be a good game this Saturday night from the Gamecocks with much better play than the last game.
"I think these players can play a lot better than we played the last time out, and it is our jobs as coaches to put them in position to let them play. So we are trying to do that this week, and we are looking forward to the game Saturday. Shouldn't be a hot-screamin' night, so the weather should be nice for everybody. Saturday night, 7:00 here."