Saturday night in Lexington didn’t go as planned for the Gamecocks.
Carolina’s offense was only able to score 10 points against a defense that was averaging over 40-points against a game. Just 10 points against one of the worst defenses in all of college football. A defense that yielded 42 points to New Mexico State just one week before.
This part is what is most frustrating for Gamecocks fans.
The defense cannot take the blame for this loss. They held the Kentucky offense, led by a mobile QB in Stephen Johnson, to just 17 points. The two-headed running back for the Wildcats, Stanley Williams and Benjamin Snell Jr, did combine for 196 yards and 2 touchdowns on the ground…but when you give up just 17 points, you should win the football game.
Therefore the frustrations have to lie with the offense. So cue the Gator fan chorus of “I told you so” about the Muschamp/Roper offense, but I for one don’t agree with that being the issue.
The issue for me still stems from reality.
The reality that Steve Spurrier and company didn’t really do much recruiting the last couple of years. The reality that this team is devoid of developed talent. The reality that Brandon McIlwain has just 2-games of experience as a starting quarterback after last night’s loss to Kentucky.
Reality is why I can take a loss like the one we saw in Lexington and still have a positive outlook for the future. Sure my 6-6 prediction is now in jeopardy as a win against Kentucky was part of that puzzle…but the future doesn’t only include 2016.
Some of our fan base has been a little spoiled over the last handful of years and now they have delusions of grandeur. The delusions including, but are not limited to, thinking there is a quick fix to the mess that befell our team last season.
You may not have wanted Muschamp for this job, but let me tell you right now that not Tom Herman, Justin Fuente or even Mark Richt would be able to make this team a legitimate contender over night. So hate on Muschamp or Roper all you want, but nothing was going to happen overnight.
Patience is needed from the fan for this chapter of Gamecocks football.
I know this is a tough task right now with Clemson having so much success, but the Tigers rise to being a national contender didn’t just happen overnight either. Tommy Bowden was fired after a 3-3 start in 2007, Dabo Swinney then went 4-3 to bring the Tigers to 7-6.
Between 2010 and now the Tigers have won 10 or more games every season, that’s two and a half seasons with Swinney before national relevance and still at that time Clemson wasn’t considered a legitimate title contender yet.
In 2015 Clemson rose to the level of legitimate contender. That’s eight and a half seasons under Dabo Swinney before their playoff berth. Yes, multiple BCS berths and multiple ACC titles were a part of the path to the top, but again, none of it happened overnight.
Now I’m not sharing in the delusions of grandeur here and saying that the Gamecocks under Muschamp will be a national contender anytime soon, or maybe even at all.
I live in the world of reality and know that’s expecting far too much. The reason I’m pointing all of this out is because I’m seeing far too many Gamecocks fans bailing on this coaching staff and these players after just four football games.
We need to be patient. Rebuilding this program will take time. I still believe Muschamp and the coaching staff he put together will turn this thing around and I firmly believe we’ve already seen the beginnings of a bright future.
So take a deep breath Gamecock fans. It will all be okay.
Forever to thee.
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