STORY FROM USC SID:
The University of South Carolina football team arrived in Shreveport on Tuesday afternoon. The Gamecocks (6-6) will take on the Miami Hurricanes (6-6) on Saturday, December 27, in the Duck Commander Independence Bowl. Kick is set for 3:30 p.m. ET (2:30 in Shreveport) and the contest will be televised nationally on ABC.
Head coach Steve Spurrier said the Gamecocks are excited to be in Shreveport. “We’re thrilled to be here. Thrilled to be at the Duck Commander Independence Bowl here in Shreveport. We were here 10 years ago and this is a first-class bowl. They run it the right way and they’ve been doing it for a long time. We’re looking forward to the rest of the week and hopefully we’ll play a very good game Saturday. Miami is a very good opponent. They’re 6-6 just like us, so somebody is going to be a winner and somebody is going to leave a loser. So a lot on the line for this game.”
Coach Spurrier confirmed that junior wide receiver Shaq Roland did not make the trip and would not be available on Saturday. “Shaq Roland is not with the team anymore,” said the Head Ball Coach. “I think he’s elected to maybe drop out of school and go pro. That was his choice and we wish him the best.”
Despite having a long history in Florida, Coach Spurrier does not think that will play a part in this contest. “We’re South Carolina and they’re Miami,” said Coach Spurrier. “The two teams used to play a long time ago. Both schools were independent back then so they had a game with each other. They’re a very good team. The ACC has a lot of very good teams. We’re looking forward to it and I’m sure they are too. They’re very capable of beating anybody,” continued Coach Spurrier.
“We’re trying to get to 7-6,” noted the Head Ball Coach when asked of the importance of the game. “We’ve been fortunate in our bowl games lately. We’ve practiced very similarly.” Coach Spurrier said the practices in Columbia have been fine. “Normal, about like every year.”
“We’ve got a good team coming next year,” said Coach Spurrier when asked how long he plans on coaching. “We’ll see how it goes. I’ve got two sons on the staff. We’ve got a good bunch of guys. Hopefully four-to-five years, that’s what we always say. That’s what I said five years ago. When I got the job, that’s what I said.”
The Gamecocks will take part in the Team Welcome Tuesday night at the Riverview Theater, followed by the Chairman’s Reception at SCI-PORT. The team will hold its first practice in Shreveport on Wednesday at 11:30 a.m.