Number Association Countdown – #18 – Steve Taneyhill
Who did you expect, Carl Platt?
Steve Taneyhill came out of nowhere in 1992 to take an 0-5 Gamecock squad and guide them to a 5-1 finish. No South Carolina season has ever seen so much despair followed by so much euphoria. Early in the season players revolted and voted to “dismiss” Sparky Woods. But Woods turned to the long-haired freshman from Pennsyvania in game six, and the rest is history.
Taneyhill not only won games, but did it with flair that gained him and the team national recognition – hair flowing out of the back of the helmet (did we even call it a mullet back then?), taking the helmet off and mugging for the camera (thanks “the U”), and mock home run swings. But there was substance to go with the style, as he led the Gamecocks to their first ever bowl victory, and even briefly moved into Heisman contention in 1995 after a 473-yard performance against Mississippi State.
To this day, when people find out I’m a Gamecock fan, some still ask “who was that long-haired quarterback you guys used to have?”
“Yeah, that’s it. I HATED that guy.”
Sometimes it’s good to be hated.