South Carolina isn’t going to see players like Nick Chubb and Sony Michel too often this season, or ever actually.
Why? Because Will Muschamp thinks players like Georgia’s two-headed running attack are out of this world.
“There’s not a lot of 27s and 1s walking around on this earth,” he said after the game.
And it’s probably a good thing the Gamecocks won’t be seeing players quite like that any time soon.
The defense was unable to corral those two on the edge all night as they combined for 183 yards and a touchdown in Saturday’s 24-10 loss to Georgia.
They averaged 5.1 yards per carry and had a combined 13 rushes of five yards or more between the hedges.
Skai Moore said the defense was in position but the backs’ active feet made it hard for Gamecock defenders to bring them down.
“We got some guys in position and they made a lot of people miss,” Muschamp said. “We forced Jake Fromm to play quarterback and I compliment Jake. He played extremely well tonight; he was very accurate with the football.”
Fromm finished 16-for-22 passing with 196 yards and two touchdowns, both being caught in the back of the end zone.
He led the Bulldogs to 8-for-13 on third down Saturday to end South Carolina’s three-game win streak.
Muschamp said a big reason why the defense couldn’t string together enough stops was because of that third-down conversion rate. Georgia failed to convert five third downs and only punted three times.
On scoring drives, they went 7-for-8 on third downs. The only third down not converted was inside the Gamecock 10-yard line and resulted in a field goal.
Some of that, Muschamp said, was because players didn’t finish tackles and bring their feet with them.
That falls on the players and coaches and led to a tired South Carolina unit to end the game, Muschamp said. Georgia had 56 yards rushing in the fourth quarter alone.
“We just got to get off the field faster,” Skai Moore said. “When we get to third downs, we have to get off the field. We can’t have those long drives because that kills our legs.”
South Carolina defensively has a lot to hang its hat on. The unit held Georgia under it’s scoring average, rushing average and total yards averaged per game. They also forced Georgia’s first unsuccessful red zone trip this season.
Previously, the Bulldogs were 31-for-31 inside the opposing team’s 20-yard line.
Hayden Hurst said there isn’t much a team can take out of a loss that doesn’t hurt a little, but the Gamecock defense has to take some solace in hanging with the top-ranked team in the country almost shot-for-shot.
“We fought. We fought to the end,” Skai Moore said. That’s something we did well.”