Life After Lattimore
Hello, again, Gamecock Nation!
First off, let me congratulate Marcus on his four year deal in the NFL worth about an average of $550,000 a year. It’s much deserved. Once a Gamecock, Always a Gamecock. I hope to see him in a visor on the sidelines after his NFL career.
Moving on. Unfortunately.
Gamecocks, we were spoiled rotten by having Marcus in the backfield. After going down with knee injuries, we saw Kenny Miles and Brandon Wilds come in to replace him. They did very well. Now that Kenny is gone, we have to look ahead at the competition.
Mike Davis is slated to be the starter when we open the season against the
tarholes Tarheels of North Carolina. I have a feeling “starter” is being used to describe the person getting more carries than the other backs. Don’t get me wrong, Mike could start the whole game, run circles around Dawgs, Tarheels, Gators, and Tigers all day. The point is, he does not have to.
The runningback depth chart should be ranked 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, etc. All of the backs will get their carries. So let’s examine these backs and their skill sets. They all catch well out of the back field, so that’ll be excluded from the following.
Davis is the type of runningback people love. He doesn’t miss a beat hitting a hole. He has the strength to run you over, and he has the speed to run from you like the mailman runs from a Rottweiler. He had limited showings as a pass blocker, so I won’t say whether he is good or bad at that side of the game.
Wilds filled in very nicely his freshman season after Marcus’ first injury, posting multiple 100+ yard games. He’s taller than average (6’1″ I believe), he’s an okay pass blocker, but he needs work. He was a freshman though, he’s now had two full seasons of weight training and practicing, so I’m sure he has improved very well. He’ll get a fair share of carries, so we shall see.
Salley had surgery prior to his freshman season, after redshirting last season rehabbing and showing a very nice work ethic, he is back to form. Kendric has a skill set that is most similar to Lattimore on the depth chart. He’s maybe a step or two faster, not much wasted space. I don’t have much to go on aside high school highlights, but look for him to make a splash.
I would LOVE for Shon to be 100% this season. He is a homerun threat on every play. I wouldn’t really say he’s been PLAGUED by injuries, he had a knee injury freshman year, and another injury this past year that kept him out long enough the coaches decided to redshirt him, although he had it burned in the bowl game. I hope to see him on the field, he’s earned his chance to shine.
David Williams & Jamari Smith.
I know everyone loves Williams, and I’m sure he’ll be a great Gamecock. He has speed. He has strength. He can catch. He was a highly recruited runningback. Jamari Smith on the other hand, was a three star recruit. How, I’m not sure. The guy had 2,800 yards (approximately), in Division 8A Florida ball. Let me spell that out, A A A A A A A A FLORIDA ball. That’s incredible. Maybe it’ll be the next thunder & lightning combination.
Either way, It’s a great time to be a Gamecock!
JB, Signing Off.