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Steve Spurrier: We Aren't Giving Up on the Passing Game

Steve Spurrier called Thursday's opening win at Vanderbilt one of the worst passing performances of his career.
Steve Spurrier called Thursday's opening win at Vanderbilt one of the worst passing performances of his career.Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
Kevin McRaeFeatured ColumnistSeptember 7, 2012

Despite an injured quarterback and a Heisman Trophy-caliber running back, South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier isn't giving up on his passing game.

The ninth-ranked Gamecocks (1-0 1-0 SEC East) passed for just 67 yards in a season-opening 17-13 victory over conference rival Vanderbilt last Thursday night. For Spurrier, that is simply unacceptable.

"We had one of the worst passing nights we've ever had," the coach told

This can largely be attributed to an injury suffered by junior quarterback Connor Shaw late in the first half. Shaw managed to return and finish the game, but was severely limited by the pain which made it difficult to even lift his arm, much less complete a deep route.

But Spurrier is undaunted as his team moves on this week for their home opener against a dangerous East Carolina football team.

"We'll keep it as is and if we're throwing a bunch of completions, we'll keep firing away," Spurrier said. "If not, we're going to the next plan, just like we always do."

With Shaw's status up in the air for Saturday's game, the next plan is likely to include a heavy dose of Heisman candidate Marcus Lattimore, who sparked the Gamecocks offense against Vanderbilt, rushing for 110 yards and two scores.

If Shaw can't go, South Carolina will be forced to start sophomore backup Dylan Thompson, a prospect not relished by most fans. Thompson was ineffective in limited action against Vanderbilt, going 0-for-3 with two sacks. 

South Carolina hosts the Pirates of East Carolina this Saturday at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia.

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