Marcus Lattimore had tears in his eyes has he sat in front of reporters trying to describe what went wrong in USC’s 56-17 loss. Holding back tears, he told reporters how badly he wants to return to Atlanta and help the Gamecocks take the next step and win its first ever SEC Championship game.
Lattimore finished with 84 yards and 16 carries. His touches were limited after the Gamecocks fell behind 28-14 early in the third quarter and had to rely almost exclusively on the pass.
That passing attack didn’t materialize very well. Stephen Garcia started the game hot, completing seven of nine passes for 86 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter. He finished the game 16 of 28 with 176 yards and two interceptions. One of his picks was returned 10 yards for a touchdown.
The defense never found a way to slow down Cam Newton, so it didn’t really matter much what the offense did. Defensive end Cliff Matthews tipped his hat to Newton and the Tigers.
Auburn finished the game with 589 yards of total offense. The 56 points they scored was an SEC Championship game record.