COLUMBIA, S.C. – Will Muschamp would rather not see his players on a bye weekend.
South Carolina’s first-year head coach prefers they stay away from the football facility.
“I encourage our guys to decompress, get away from football. I don’t want them in the building unless they need (injury) treatment,” Muschamp said. “They need to get away from us a little bit, whether it’s seeing family or whatever they want to do.”
Senior defensive end Darius English went to Highlands, N.C.
“I watched a good bit of football this weekend, especially the Alabama-Tennessee game,” he said. “That was pretty exciting to watch. There were a couple of edge guys that I like watching.”
That’s par for the course for English, who’s tied for second in the SEC with 6 sacks.
“Whenever I get a chance, I try to watch other guys and see what they’re doing, how I can improve my game,” he said.
With an eye on improving after his outing against Georgia, redshirt freshman running back A.J. Turner stayed in town and did “extra stuff.”
“Didn’t want to go home,” he said, “Kind of upset about the Georgia game, so just stayed here and did a little extra. Trying to get better. Trying to be great.”
As Turner labored over the ladders and bags at the practice facility, Zack Bailey chilled by the beach.
The sophomore offensive lineman spent the weekend by the South Carolina coast relaxing at Isle of Palms. He also ventured into Charleston for The Citadel’s game against Chattanooga.
“My girlfriend’s brother, he had a ring ceremony at the game and I have a couple of friends up there,” Bailey said.
Junior defensive tackle Taylor Stallworth went back home to Mobile, Ala. on Thursday then stopped in Atlanta while on the way back Saturday.
“For a short-period of time, it’s cool to see my mom and see my sisters and brothers and my little nieces. I’ve got like five of them,” he said. “It’s good to see them, especially my pops and my grandma.”
There’s no right way or a wrong way to spend the bye week. Whatever it takes to recharge the batteries for the home stretch of the season works just fine.
“As far as me,” Muschamp said, “I worked most of the day Saturday.”