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September 28, 2013

Notebook: Prolific offense rolls on

ORLANDO - Regardless of who is playing quarterback, the South Carolina offense just keeps churning out the yards at a frantic pace.

With Dylan Thompson playing most of the game after Connor Shaw suffered a shoulder injury, the Gamecocks shredded the UCF defense for 490 total yards in Saturday's 28-25 victory over the Knights at Bright House Networks Stadium.

USC has gained 1,523 yards in the last three games, just the third time in school history the Gamecocks have topped 1,500 yards (average of 500 offensive yards per game) in a three-game stretch. The first two occasions were in 1995 (1,704 yards) and 2006 (1,549 yards). Here is the breakdown of the three times USC has averaged 500 or more yards over a three-game stretch:

1995 - Kent State (544), Mississippi State (652), Vanderbilt (508)
2006 - Middle Tennessee (545), Clemson (492), Houston (512)
2013 - Georgia (536), Vanderbilt (579), UCF (490)

The USC offense is averaging 482.3 yards in total offense after four games.

ROLAND STAYS HOME: Sophomore wide receiver Shaq Roland did not accompany the Gamecocks to Orlando due to a violation of athletic department policy. Spurrier replied, "Ask the athletic director" when asked if Roland would play next week.

SECOND HALF SCORING: USC came into Saturday's game having scored 72 of 92 points in the first half. Obviously, Saturday's game marked a reversal of that trend as the Gamecocks scored all 28 of their points in the second half. Here's the quarter-by-quarter scoring breakdown after four games:

1st quarter - 41 points
2nd quarter - 31 points
3rd quarter - 28 points
4th quarter - 20 points

Total: 120 Points (30.0 points per game).

MISCELLANEOUS:

* Per the USC game notes, UCF will travel to Columbia in 2015 for the back half of the home-and-home series. The exact date won't be known until the conference schedule is set for that season.

* Davis pushed his season rushing total to 508 yards, a pace that would put him over the 1,500 mark during the regular season. It would be the third-highest single season total in USC history behind George Rogers's junior (1,681) and senior (1,894) seasons. Davis has three 100-yard rushing games already this season, just one fewer than USC had all of last season.

* Spurrier said fullback Connor McLaurin was awarded game ball for his blocking while clearing the way for Davis in the second half.

* Spurrier said Perry Orth or Brendan Nosovitch will serve as the backup quarterback while Shaw is sidelined with the shoulder ailment.

* Three played led USC with five tackles apiece: T.J. Holloman, Kaiwan Lewis and Sharrod Golightly.

* USC had five tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and three quarterback hurries.

* USC won the time of possession battle by controlling the ball 30:49 compared to 29:11 for UCF.

* USC was 10-of-18 on third down conversions, while UCF was 6-of-11. For the season, Gamecocks are 31-of-60 on third downs (51.7 percent).

* USC came into the game with just one interception on the season, but had three on Saturday. UCF quarterback Blake Bortles threw a school record 232 straight passes without an interception until being picked off two weeks ago at Penn State. Jimmy Legree leads USC with two interceptions.

* USC has 92 first downs in four games.

* The victory all but assured USC would extends its stay in the AP Top 25 to 53 second straight weeks when the new poll is released on Sunday.

* Spurrier is now 69-38 (.645) as USC head coach.

* Tyler Hull punted three times for an average of 47.0 yards per boot. The four-yard punt on the bad snap was attributed to the team.

SEC SCORES/SCHEDULE (Sat. 9/28):
South Carolina 28, UCF 25
Tennessee 31, South Alabama 24
LSU at Georgia, 3:30 p.m. (CBS)
Ole Miss at Alabama, 6:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Texas A&M at Arkansas, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
Florida at Kentucky, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
Arkansas State at Missouri, 7:30 p.m. (CSS)
UAB at Vanderbilt, 7:30 p.m. (FSN)
(All Times Eastern)
OPEN: Auburn (3-1), Mississippi State (2-2)

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