South Carolina Offensive Coordinator Bryan McClendon is no stranger to the feel of the first day of a new practice slate, but has never had as much responsibility as he does now.
The first year play-caller will take on the task of improving an offense that had his predecessor let go following a disappointing output of points, yards and execution.
The Gamecocks finished third from the bottom in the SEC in total points and yards as well as the per-game averages for each category.
South Carolina does return 98 percent of its rushing yards and 80 percent of its receiving yards along with Deebo Samuel, who missed most of 2017 with a leg injury.
Samuel will be withheld from contact for the first couple of weeks of practice, according to McClendon, who said he was out at practice “like nothing’s happened.”
McClendon will have to deal with a reshuffling of the offensive line, and he along with Head Coach Will Muschamp would like to develop some depth there.
Speaking of depth, the quarterback position returns two scholarship backups in Michael Scarnecchia and Jay Urich and adds freshman standout Dakereon Joyner. While McClendon says there’s significant upside of the Fort Dorchester product, it’s too soon to tell whether he’s in the plans either at quarterback or a special package during the upcoming season.
To hear McClendon’s comments following the first day of practice, click below: