Positively second place

You know, the outcome of Saturday’s game hasn’t put me in a mood to gloat – nailbiters tend to do that – but, still, I can’t help but post this graciously put but nevertheless quintessential Gamecock moral victory rationale:

… The fact that we not only could have but absolutely should have won this game made matters worse upon further reflection. In saying that, I’m not trying to take anything away from Georgia. The ‘Dawgs played a good, gritty game and made the plays they needed to make to win. However, if we could have put the brakes on one of the handful of big plays they made, we win. If we could have scored a touchdown one of the several times we settled for a field goal, we win. If we don’t commit stupid penalties and have touchdowns called back, we win. If we don’t give up a blocked extra point, we win. In short, this game was there for the taking, and we didn’t take it. It’s tough to think about. A quick look at the box score will show you that we beat Georgia in every aspect of the game other than special teams and the one stat that counts, the scoreboard.

Been there, done that, fella.  (h/t Dawg Sports)

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19 Comments

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19 responses to “Positively second place

  1. BigOldDawg

    first loser?

  2. It certainly was there for the taking. Similarly, as I was leaving Sanford on Saturday I extended my hand to the Gamecock fan sitting in my section to offer good luck and made the comment that “Garcia played one hell of a game”. Refusing my handshake, he replied that it was a matter of the refs “screwing them” and that Georgia was “destined for 6-6 without some zebra assistance”. Firstly, I reminded him of the orifice that he most accurately represented and then reminded him that if the special teams and offense don’t spot the ‘Cocks 17 points in the 1st half, we’re up by 32 and not 15 in the 3rd quarter.

    It’s easy to say what Gamecock Man says above:

    … The fact that we not only could have but absolutely should have won this game made matters worse upon further reflection.

    The fact of the matter is that it could have been much worse for them, but they are unwilling to see that through the garnet and black glasses. It just sounds like sour grapes to me from Gamecock fans at times.

    • gamecock man

      Fair enough. The game certainly could have gone worse for us if a couple of key things happen. We could have also won easily if a couple of other things had happened. It was a close game, and close games are always like that, to some degree.

      My post wasn’t sour grapes. As I tried to make clear several times in the post, my hat goes off to Georgia for pulling out the win. Your guys made the plays you needed to and we didn’t, and that means you were the better team that night. It certainly wasn’t the refs, as the calls went both ways and most of them were good calls from where I was sitting. I apologize for the Gamecock that was rude to you. He was an asshole and, I hope, wasn’t representative. He certainly doesn’t represent me.

      I’m OK, however, with calling it a moral victory. This South Carolina team is very young and should get better as it matures. Garcia, especially, has a lot of potential. For a sophomore with an inexperienced receiving corps to put on that kind of performance says something about where this offense can be in the coming years.

      Take that for what it’s worth. The ‘Dawgs deserved the win and I wish you luck with the rest of your season.

      • While I wish you luck in every game but ours each season, I doubt you’ll run in to too many other defenses that leave such a huge hole in their zone underneath for your tight end. Without Saunders continually getting those yards, your offense doesn’t look nearly as good. Great job by the OCB to pick up our zone weakness, but do you really think other defensive coordinators won’t watch our game tape and see the same thing?

        • That may be so. However, at the same time I think this offense will become more and more capable of going vertical as the receiving corps matures. Several potential big plays were blown up by mistakes by the receivers. If that changes, this offense will continue to diversify. But you’re right; Saturday we largely exploited the zone with underneath passes and Garcia’s feet.

          • I will say this, if you ever can develop some wide receivers this season, you’ll be in much better shape than you’ve been in years. While your offensive line still isn’t great, it’s much better than it has been. Given that Garcia isn’t the noodle armed tool that Mitchel and/or Smelley were, you stand a better chance at 2nd/3rd in the division with a strong finish than you usually do. Plus, I mean, Crompton. You’ve got to get that.

            • That’s one of the main things I took away from the game. Not having a go-to receiver hurt us on those red-zone trips. Saunders is a great TE, but the guy is too big to make athletic end-zone grabs. He’s more of a safety valve. Gurley looks like he has a bit of potential, but he’s a converted safety and still needs to work on his technique. Plus, he had a couple of ugly drops. The other guys all either need lots of work or are never going to be more than utility players.

              And yeah, that UT outcome was encouraging. I actually feel pretty good about out chances at 3rd and a New Years Day bowl if we can continue to improve.

  3. heyberto

    It’s impossible to know if the post from the Gamecock fan is from this year, or any UGA victory since 2002.

    Seriously.. this is the year they’re claiming a moral victory? Glad sleeping beauty the gamecock woke up and realized how this series has been going since 2002.

  4. SkewDawg

    they got a free 8 points from our offense. They also got 10 more points as a result from turnovers deep iin our own territory.

    Sure they took advantage of our mistakes on that 10 points, but I firmly believe we still score at least 41 regardless. We could have run on them all night. We could have hit short passes to AJ all night. “Could” have actually been about 41-20 UGA, if we want to play that card.

    Yes, the game was there for the taking, and the Dawgs took it.

  5. baltimore dawg

    bottom line: sc is still a program whose fans can take comfort in moral victories (rationalized ones or actual ones).

    just let’em have it. we’ll take the “w.”

  6. HVL Dawg

    Gamecocks can certainly be happy that Garcia played well. Before now his name has been a punch line at cocktail parties.

    Both teams can take some positives from this game, but Uga takes the win.

  7. Either team could have easily lost. UGA does not have much to be excited about from this game, except for one very important thing: 1-0 in the SEC.

  8. 81Dog

    I swear I am not making this up: as I trudged up the hill toward the law school after the game, mere minutes after yet another soul crushing loss to UGA, I heard two 25ish Gamecocks confidently dismissing the significance of the loss. They agreed that they would most likely beat Alabama, catch Florida sleeping on them, and win the East. To hear these two optimists breaking it down, UGA was lucky, their offense was really great, and their defense wont have another bad game the rest of the year.

    God bless the naive, unshakeable, and totally unjustified optimism of the Gamecock fan. And may they keep leaving the annual matchup with UGA convinced that, despite yet another loss to us, they’re really the superior program and well on their way to that as yet unrealized magical championship season.

    Beating South Carolina has never been a portent of a successful season for UGA. It just means we won’t come in last in the East. Losing to them is generally a sign of bad things to follow. I hope Spurrier stays there several more years; maybe we can even up our overall record against him.

  9. D.N. Nation

    Wouldn’t surprise me if South Carolina beat Overrated Miss.

  10. JP

    I’m not going to go as far as those two Carolina fans, but I do think that Garcia is going to be the first good QB the OBC has had in Columbia. And, while I don’t expect it, I would not be surprised if they did actually beat Bama or Ole Miss. A win against Florida… not a chance. This USC team doesn’t look bad.

  11. Cordy Glenn

    Why didn’t yall bring me some Maurice’s? That bigot make some good bbq. nom nom nom nom

  12. Gamecock Motto

    Argentina! Argentina!
    Appalachian Trail!
    Gamecocks! Gamecocks!
    Fail! Fail! Fail!