When It Was Over

When did you realize the Steve Spurrier era was over at South Carolina? I’m not talking about the general speculation that has followed the HBC since he stepped on campus almost 11 years ago. I mean that moment when you said, “OK, this is definitely it for Steve Spurrier at South Carolina, he’s hanging it up.”

Maybe it was after last season’s 7-6 finish. Maybe it was after his “enemies” rant late this summer. If you were like us, you came to the realization after the Kentucky game. Or maybe you hung on to see if we could spring that oh-so-common upset of Georgia.

Then again, maybe you still aren’t quite there yet. Maybe you’re hanging on to those glorious back-to-back-to-back 11-win seasons and you feel like all we need is a tweak or two to get back on track.

If you’re in that last group, then I submit to you a quote from Steve Spurrier’s call-in show from last night, courtesy of The State’s Matt Connolly.

I cannot find the words to properly express how baffling, frustrating, and embarrassing these revelations are. First of all, wrap your heads around the thought that a major college football team, led by one of the greatest offensive minds in the history of the game, against the two-time defending SEC East Champions, ran all of TWO running plays for an entire game. And it’s not as it they were working, these two brilliant running plays didn’t work at all. We finished with 112 yards rushing (3.3 ypc) and 60 of those yards came on Lorenzo Nunez runs that were mostly not designed running plays.

Second, I’m not big on the thought that teams are spending a lot of resources on trying to steal signals or plays. If they are, then they are taking resources away from the things that actually win a game. However, when your playbook can fit on half of one side of a cocktail napkin, you make it really easy for the other side to figure out what you’re doing. If Missouri was picking up our signals, then good for them. I honestly don’t think it was part of their game plan, they just happened to see a $20 bill lying on the sidewalk and they picked it up.

Finally, I was listening to a radio show, “Chuck and Chernoff”, driving home in Atlanta yesterday. Chuck Oliver is an excellent college football guy, and has followed the path of Steve Spurrier for many years. Here’s what he had to say:

Chuck and Chernoff on Spurrier

Oliver nails it here. There seemed to be so much fire and passion behind the “enemies” rant, and now Spurrier just sounds sad. I don’t think he’s necessarily lost his passion, I just don’t think he knows what to do. Practically everyone on our schedule has more talent and better coaching than us, and he knows it.

As the evidence continues to mount week after week, there is no question it’s almost over for Steve Spurrier at South Carolina. He hasn’t quit on us yet, but based on what we’ve heard the last week, he’s in the process.

11 thoughts on “When It Was Over

  1. When he made the comment that he doesn’t despise Clemson the way our fans do.

    That did it for me.

    I can understand him feeling that way but why say it? GTFO of here.

  2. I listened to the call-in show Thursday night and the HBC sounded tired, without answers, and lifeless. The comments about Clemson and their great season this year bothered me as well as basically sounding like LSU is going to beat us but “heck we’ll go down there and try.”

    The more I read of Houston’s Tom Herman, the more I think he might be our guy.

    1. Yes, the fan base is the problem. All of this pressure we put on him to put a team on the field that doesn’t suck.

    2. USC81, the university pays the man FOUR MILLION BUCKS a year and you think it’s OK for him to phone it in?

  3. You are right. Team does suck and that is not the fault of the fan base. Let’s face it though, Carolina has sucked for about 2/3rds of its 122 years of football. Spurrier however has consistently succeeded where no other coach, through about 100 years, has. Therefore, if you have a coach who represents our school well, who the rest of college football considers a legend, and has not had a losing season in the last 10 years – you may want to hang onto him.

    1. Two things here – first, just because we’ve been bad for most of our history doesn’t mean we should just accept it and set our expectations based on that. Spurrier is a victim of his own success in this regard in that he has set new expectations and the last two seasons has not been able to live up to them. Second, he has done great things for South Carolina football, and we have acknowledged that fact innumerable times on this blog. We have been singing his praises for five years. Unfortunately he’s now in the process of running the program into a ditch, and that should be unacceptable to South Carolina fans. It’s sad and unfortunate, but it’s time for him to go.

  4. Well, he is gone. So it is a moot point now.
    However, hanging onto Spurrier was doing just what you advocate above – not being satisfied with being sub par. We had a great coach, and he still is. He is not a victim of his success, he is a victim of our unjustified expectation of continued success in the toughest conference in college football. You call me defeatist, I say I am pragmatic. He deserved better from us.
    I suspect that we will now go back to hiring the flavor of the month, then calling for his head every 4 or 5 years – as we did for decades – with similar results. I hope I am wrong.

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