CHARLESTON, S.C. — South Carolina football coach Will Muschamp already has his to-do list prepared and ready to roll for spring practice.
The Gamecocks’ first day back on the field in 2018 will be Feb. 28. Over the course of those 15 practices, Muschamp hopes to get a better sense of where things are in several areas.
- Who’s going to back up quarterback Jake Bentley?
- Which offensive linemen can provide depth?
- Are there any safeties other than Steven Montac who will be “able to play and function” on game days?
For Muschamp, who spoke to Gamecocks fans Thursday, there are “a lot of questions to be answered” between Feb. 28 and March 31.
“We’ve got to continue to improve on both lines of scrimmage, being able to run the ball when we need to, be able to stop the run on defense, and that goes back to toughness,” Muschamp said. “I think we’ve improved tremendously from Year 1 to Year 2. I think we’ve got to take another step in Year 3.”
Thirteen of the 22 players South Carolina signed in the 2018 recruiting class already are on campus, though some won’t be able to go through spring practice because of previous injuries.
“I think that’s huge, to have them go through and get oriented in the weight room and also go through spring practice,” Muschamp said. “But [to] also get introduced to the academic curriculum and things on campus, it’s a huge part of the maturation process of being a student-athlete.”
The Gamecocks’ third-year coach is confident that this spring will be a productive one.
“I really like the culture that we have on the team and really like the work ethic and the commitment and discipline level that we have at this point,” Muschamp said.
“The good part for us is our best players are great people. They understand about work ethic. They understand about the time it takes to be successful. That’s going to be fun, as far as that’s concerned.”