An instate affair
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The Gamecocks will play their annual instate FCS opponent when The Citadel come to Williams-Brice Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 12. Game time is set for high noon.
Carolina leads the all-time series, 39-7-3, including a 13-4 mark at home. The teams have met just once since 1985, a 38-35 Citadel win in the 1990 season. The Gamecocks have won nine of the last 10 and 24 of the last 26 contests between the two schools.
The Gamecocks (8-2, 6-2 SEC) are ranked 14th in both national polls and come in 12th in this week’s BCS Standings. They will be facing a Citadel Bulldog team that is playing its final game of the season. The Bulldogs are 4-6 overall and finished the 2011 season with a 2-5 in the Southern Conference under seventh-year head coach Kevin Higgins.
South Carolina should win this game. Here are five keys to the game for USC:
1. USC Must Contain the Triple-option
The Gamecocks have the luxury of this not being their only team faced that uses the triple-option in 2011 as they played Navy. So they have seen the scheme and should recall what it takes to make it ineffective. Key is pressure up the middle from the defensive line and assignment football on the edges.
2. USC Must Play Their Game
The Gamecocks need to take care of business in this game and get the win. Do what it takes and what the Citadel defense allows whether it is by land or air. Just execute on both sides of the ball and do not let mistakes make this into a game.
3. Ride the “Shaw and Wilds” Train
The Gamecocks just need to run the read-option scheme over and over in this game. Do this and grind out a win without risk. The scheme with these two has been working and they need to continue.
4. USC Linebackers Have to Step Up
The Gamecocks will be tested by the triple-option and as mentioned it has to be contained. One unit that must play at a high level is the Gamecock linebackers. They must be on their toes, ready to fill the gaps and make the tackle.
5. USC Must Remain Injury-Free
No injuries this game please as the rivalry match-up with Clemson is the following week. Get the lead, keep the lead and rest the starters.
Knowing all of this now, look for the Gamecocks to win this game by the score of 34-10.