Since he took over in 2005 Steve Spurrier has talked a lot about changing the culture at USC. He’s spent a lot of time lamenting players that don’t buy into the program and display the proper level of dedication needed to win at a high level. If you notice, the HBC hasn’t been saying that as much this year.
When you listen to guys like Tori Gurley and Brian Maddox talk, you can see why the Gamecocks are in a position to accomplish things that once seemed impossible.
Gurley and Maddox are perfect examples of players that put the program ahead of their own interest. Both could have gone elsewhere or given up, but both have persevered and have found a way to contribute.
Gurley had a career night against the Commodores Saturday, catching 13 passes for 109 yards and one touchdown. Gurley is actually a great story; this is a 22 year-old redshirt sophomore that almost didn’t get the chance to play college football. When he finished up his career at Rock Hill high school he didn’t qualify academically to play in college. He was working at Lowes and Home Depot and playing pickup basketball games when he was discovered by a coach and placed in a prep school. The Gamecocks are happy Gurley’s journey led him to Columbia.
Click the below to read more and hear from Gurley and Maddox.
Maddox is another great story. Maddox was a highly recruited player out of T.L. Hannah high school and was a guy that many people thought would be USC’s next great running back. He’s never been the team’s featured back but he has always maintained a positive attitude and strong worth ethic. Even last week, after dealing with what he called the devastating news that he wouldn’t be starting in place of the injured Marcus Lattimore, Maddox came off the bench to rush for a career high 149 yards.
Maddox did something we don’t see much from many of today’s spoiled and coddled athlete. Instead of whining or complaining or pouting about the coaches not giving him an opportunity he deserved, he went out and showed why they were wrong on the field. A lot of guys would have checked out at that point and it says a lot about Maddox and his character that he didn’t.
Guys like Maddox and Gurley are a big reason why USC has gone from a pretender to a contender in the SEC.