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Steve Spurrier Lost His Damn Mind

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HBC done lost it on Saturday.

With a Georgia team decimated by injuries, having lost two of three and barely surviving a scare from Tennessee two weeks ago, South Carolina was poised to take control of the SEC East. All they had to do was beat Missouri next week without starting quarterback James Franklin and not overlook the Volunteers in the mean time.

Unfortunately for Gamecocks fans, it seems the Head Ball Coach may have been planning ahead, because he seemed entirely unprepared to be coaching a close game at the end of the fourth quarter. On Friday Steve Spurrier joked that he had probably coached more games at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville than some of the Vols’ head coaches.

It was classic Spurrier trolling, which was a lot funnier yesterday than it was today.

Tennessee dominated South Carolina in the first half, particularly in the second quarter when they responded to an early Gamecocks touchdown with 17 unanswered points, with the home team going into the locker room at half-time up 17-7.

The second half was almost all South Carolina, who began the fourth quarter up 21-17. Tennessee quickly added a field goal, making it a one point game until the final seconds of the game. Although, as time ticked down, the Gamecocks were still in a decent position to win the game—or at least have a chance to win the game—until Spurrier lost his damn mind.

With under five minutes remaining South Carolina quarterback Connor Shaw, who has had an exceptional senior season with the Gamecocks, left the game with a knee injury after being sacked by Marlon Walls and Daniel McCullers.

The loss of Connor Shaw could prove devastating for the Gamecocks.

The loss of Connor Shaw could prove devastating for the Gamecocks.

Initial reports have described Shaw’s injury as a sprain, but it wouldn’t be a surprise to find out it’s something more serious. It was definitely a cringeworthy moment watching live, particularly given how well Mike Davis had been running.

With Davis averaging 6.5 yards per carry, it’s a wonder that Shaw was put in that position to begin with. Despite the Vols having no answer for their rushing attack, with 5:44 left in the game, Spurrier called three straight passing plays. Shaw was hurt on the second.

Shortly thereafter Tennessee got the ball back and South Carolina forced a three-and-out—not for nothing, but this was Jadeveon Clowney’s best game of the season to date—and were in very good position with over three minutes on the clock and all three timeouts.

Even if they didn’t score, punted and let the Vols score, theoretically there would’ve been time left to counter. That should’ve been the worst case scenario. It wasn’t.

On the Gamecocks final drive, Spurrier called two Davis rushes which produced a net gain of two yards. Then, perhaps forgetting that Shaw was no longer in the game, he called (what looked like) a designed run for backup Dylan Thompson.

The fact that he came up four yards short was the least surprising event ever. The most surprising event ever was what transpired next.

Tennessee hadn’t done a thing on offense since the first half, which is why punting in the situation was a given. Apparently it wasn’t such an easy decision for Spurrier, who kept his offense on the field as if they were going to go for it on fourth down. Except for they didn’t go for it.

Spurrier inexplicably called a timeout. Then he sent the offense back onto the field as if they were going to go for it. Then Spurrier inexplicably called another timeout. And then he finally decided to punt the ball, but not before wasting two of three timeouts and precious seconds with his indecision.

Yep. This sums up the day for South Carolina.

Yep. This sums up the day for South Carolina.

The Vols got the ball back with 2:48 left in the game and, as if the karmic gods had finally conspired to give HBC his long deserved comeuppance, they had their best drive of the game and scored the game-winning field goal as time expired.

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