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Gamecocks Begin Second Week of Spring Ball

March 22, 2016

The University of South Carolina football team returned to the new football practice fields Tuesday afternoon as the squad began its second week of spring drills.

"Day 5 in the books, the first day I was a little disappointed with the way we came out and participated today," said head coach Will Muschamp. "We needed a little better mentality as far as approach in practice. That was a little disappointing."

Coach Muschamp said that overall the team has been pretty healthy through the first third of the spring drills, but noted that Antoine Wilder suffered a hamstring injury, while Lorenzo Nuñez hyperextended his knee on Saturday. "It's nothing serious regardless of what the reports (indicated about Nuñez)," said Coach Muschamp. "He'll be fine. We hope to get him back in a week or so.

"It's unfortunate for him," said Coach Muschamp regarding Nuñez's setback. "But he did some good things Saturday while he was in there. I think (the quarterbacks) all did. I think they all showed some ability. I thought offensively, we got after the defense, so that was very positive."

Coach Muschamp indicated that all of the quarterbacks are competing for the starting role. "They all did some nice things (in Saturday's scrimmage)," said Muschamp. "We're going to work through this week. We'll get some scrimmage snaps again Saturday and we'll continue to press forward. The quarterbacks were `live" in the scrimmage and I thought they responded well under duress for the first time, so there were some positives."

Freshman Brandon McIlwain has been impressive thus far. "He did some very nice things on Saturday," noted Coach Muschamp. "That was good. He did some very productive things for our football team in moving our team and that's the most important thing, and taking care of the football. Brandon has a lot of intangibles, which is part of being a good football player and especially a good quarterback."

Coach Muschamp indicated that the offensive line is getting the better of the defensive line thus far. "Certainly the offense is ahead of the defense at this time, especially up front. We need to get better up front defensively," noted Coach Muschamp. "That's an area we need to tremendously improve."

Returning to the roster today was fifth-year senior safety Chris Moody. Moody, a 6-1, 215-pounder from McDonough, Ga., has seen action in 37 contests including seven starts over the past three seasons, accumulating 48 career tackles. He played in all 12 games during the 2015 season, primarily on special teams. He graduated in December with a degree in interdisciplinary studies.

"Chris was going to transfer when we first got here, that's the word that I got," said Coach Muschamp. "He recently expressed some desire to stay at South Carolina, so we gave him an opportunity to come out and practice with us."

The Gamecocks will return to the practice fields on Thursday.




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