Now that we’ve heard about the offense, defense, and special teams, I’m here to lay out for you the best and worse cases for the season in terms of wins and losses. T-Bone and Buck know I’m pessimistic by nature, so the best case is going to be kind of hard for me. As I am traditionally used to seasons where we struggle, writing about the worst case comes easy.
Best Case: 10-2 regular season, 12-2 overall. I know that some folks want to go all 12-0 or 11-1 on us, but I’m going to be a bit more realistic and project a best case regular season record of 10-2. Whammy comes through and proves to be at least as effective as Ellis. Shaw protects the ball. A couple of receivers, including Shaq Roland, emerge. And Clowney and Devin Taylor create havoc all season long.
Projected Wins: Vandy, ECU, UAB, Missouri, Kentucky, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Wofford, CTU. The Georgia and CTU wins are the sweetest of the bunch for obvious reasons. After the UGA win, CMR decides to abandon his holier than thou persona and return to his true Miami alum colors. He starts things off by declaring that no Bulldog player will ever be suspended again, under any circumstances. Dabo takes the loss in stride and decides to petition the CTU Board of Trustees to remove us from their schedule, seeking to replace us with future ACC member, Coastal Carolina.
Projected Losses: LSU, Arkansas. Baton Rouge with all those crazy drunk Cajuns is just too tough, and unlike Curly Hallman, Les Miles has a horseshoe permanently situated where the sun don’t shine. Arky continues to have our number as they eke out a 27-24 victory in Columbia. Later it is learned that Bobby Petrino was on the Arkansas sideline the whole game, disguised as a water boy. A careful review of the video shows that John L. Smith was unusually thirsty throughout, especially when Arky was on offense.
This would put us at 6-2 in the SEC East with a win over Georgia. Coupled with Georgia’s loss to Missouri this puts us back in the SEC Championship Game where we meet LSU again. LSU plays atrocious offense (sound familiar?), and they don’t have Tyronne Mathieu…ok, the “Honey Badger”, to bail them out this time. Adam Yates boots a 45-yard field goal as time expires and we escape with a 17-14 win. Lattimore is the MVP after running for 215 yards on 45 carries. He scores both TD’s on 4th down one-yard plunges. So there it is, our first SEC Championship.
We nonetheless finish 3rd in the BCS as both Oklahoma and Wisconsin (have you seen their schedules? an absolute joke) go undefeated. We end up in the Sugar Bowl against Michigan — and beat them to a pulp.
We get our first SEC Championship and BCS Bowl win.
Worst Case: 7-5 regular season, 7-6 overall. Last year’s close wins become this year’s close losses. Auguste never recovers and other injuries pile up on D. Shaw’s scrambles are contained and he has to force the ball into tight zone coverages, not his strong suit.
Projected Wins: Vandy, ECU, UAB, Missouri, Kentucky, Wofford, CTU. Coach Boom figures it out on D and Florida beats us in an ugly 14-13 slugfest where most of the points result from turnovers and special teams blunders. Murray and Bray light it up against a weakened Gamecock secondary. We predictably fall to LSU and Arkansas in ugly fashion. The only real bright spot of the season is another win over lowly CTU.
Projected Losses: Georiga, LSU, Tennessee, Arkansas and Florida.
With a 3-5 SEC record, we fall way down in the bowl pecking order. We end up in the Music City Bowl against North Carolina State, another 7-5 team. Uninspired and slowed by a large night in Nashville the night before, the Pack dispatch us by a score of 24-17.
So there you have it, the best and worst case scenarios for the 2012 Gamecock football team. But just remember, we are mere bloggers, and the truth probably lies somewhere intertwined in our message.
All I know is, right now, we’re undefeated.