Gamecock Props of the Game: Missouri
South Carolina did all they could to give Missouri the game Saturday night.
But, luckily for the Gamecocks, they woke up in the fourth quarter and turned the game into a thriller as they pulled off the upset victory 27-24 in double overtime at Missouri.
It was a game to remember and there are a few standout performers who deserve some recognition from Saturday's game.
Here are this week's Gamecock Props of the Game:
1. QB Connor Shaw - There are no words to explain what Connor Shaw was able to do on Saturday night. He wasn't expected to play against Missouri after injuring his knee against Tennessee and then came down with a stomach bug that caused him to miss the team movie on Friday night and some team festivities on Saturday. Yet there he was, orchestrating one of the greatest comebacks in South Carolina history. Shaw was 20-of-29 for 201 yards with three touchdown passes. He looked limited in his mobility due to the knee injury but still came up with the big plays when necessary. He gave South Carolina life and likely saved this season for the Gamecocks. He's a true warrior and the unquestioned heart of this football team.
2. WR Bruce Ellington - Ellington showed off his mad skills on Saturday night. 10 catches for 136 yards and two touchdowns including the game-tying touchdown in the first overtime on fourth and goal from the 15-yard line. Ellington looked like a game-breaker for the Gamecocks as he made excellent catches and picked up some big yards after the catch. His first touchdown catch was a beauty as he placed his feet in the endzone, caught the ball and fell out of bounds. Just one of the play-making receivers for the Gamecocks.
3. DT Kelcy Quarles - Kelcy Quarles was all over the place against Missouri. This guy was disruptive all night long and was in the backfield several times. Quarles picked up two sacks Saturday night to boost his season total to a team-high 7.0 sacks on the year. He led the team in tackles with six and had 3.0 tackles for loss to also lead the team. This young man is likely earning himself a higher draft grade with each game like this and South Carolina may lose Quarles to the NFL draft if he keeps this up.
4. K Elliott Fry - This freshman continues to add a good bit of value to this football team. He made two field goals, including the game-winner in overtime, and overcame an early missed field goal in the first quarter to give the Gamecocks the victory. He also made all of his extra points, which in a game like this was much needed. He showed no nerves on his kick and continues to be fairly accruate this year. Great play by the true freshman this year.
5. Coach Steve Spurrier - Spurrier picked up some criticism for his play-calling against Tennessee. He admitted he liked to have some of those plays back and I think he got them against Missouri. It was a well-coached game all around and the offense made plays when it mattered and the play-calling was great late in the game. South Carolina used the screen play to perfection late in the game and drove down field to put the Gamecocks in position to tie the game. The Head Ball Coach had to love the outcome of this one and he's a big reason why the Gamecocks pulled this one off.
Overall, it was a good team effort, especially on defense. Yeah, they gave up a few big plays but were able to slow down a Missouri offense that had been lighting up their opponents all season long. The big receivers weren't that big of a factor against the smaller South Carolina secondary as most people thought they'd be. It was a great performance to see them step up and pick up some key stops late in overtime to keep South Carolina in position to win.
It was a great game with a lot of twists and turns. Give credit to this South Carolina for never giving up and fighting to the end. It was a much welcomed win and one that Gamecock fans will remember for years to come.