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South Carolina senior defensive end Dante Sawyer leads the country with 4 forced fumbles.

Timetable for injured offensive skill players; plus, the team effort in South Carolina’s pass rush

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Update on injured offensive stars

South Carolina coach Will Muschamp had an update on the Gamecocks’ injured trio of offensive skill players on Wednesday.

“Deebo Samuel, still, you’re possibly looking at the end of the season, getting him some time,” Muschamp said. “At the end of the day, that’s going to be a medical decision, whether those guys are 100 percent or not, being able to contribute back to our football team.”

The second-year Gamecocks coach noted that injured running back Rico Dowdle and tight end K.C. Crosby would “certainly” be back for a potential bowl game.

All three players suffered fractured fibulas earlier this season.

Have the Gamecocks found their pass rush?

With “Buck” Darius English graduating after last season, South Carolina had a major void to fill in its pass rush. English led the Gamecocks with 9 sacks in 2016; no other player had more than 2.

This season? After seven games, five South Carolina players have at least 2 sacks. The Gamecocks are fifth in the SEC with 17 total sacks.

Two-time SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week and D.J. Wonnum, also playing “Buck,” leads the way with 4, with senior defensive end Dante Sawyer in second with 3. Linebacker Skai Moore, “Buck” Daniel Fennell and outside LB/DE Bryson Allen-Williams are all tied for third with 2.

O-line reinforcements coming with redshirt linemen

According to Muschamp, several freshman offensive linemen have impressed on the practice field while redshirting this season.

“On the offensive line, Eric Douglas is a guy that we’re really excited about, continues to be a guy that can play multiple spots,” Muschamp said.

In additional to Douglas, fellow offensive linemen Jordan Rhodes, Jordon Carty and Summie Carlay have also had their moments.

The Gamecocks signed five offensive linemen in 2017. South Carolina starting left tackle, JUCO transfer Dennis Daley, is the only offensive lineman to sign with the Gamecocks in 2017 to avoid a redshirt this season.

3-star South Carolina commit done for the season

Three-star safety and South Carolina commit RJ Roderick will likely miss the rest of his senior season because of a stress fracture in his lower back.

“Rest and time,” he said, when asked about the treatment. “By the time January comes and I enroll, I’ll be good. Right now, I’ve just got to take a couple of extra precautions, being that I will be at South Carolina in January.”

The Cane Bay High School (Summerville, S.C.) standout primarily plays quarterback at the high school level but projects as a safety for the Gamecocks.

Roderick committed to South Carolina in June over offers from East Carolina, North Carolina State, Virginia and more.

Dorian Gerald talks Tennessee pledge

Three-star JUCO defensive end Dorian Gerald discussed the status of his commitment to Tennessee with SportsTalk’s Phil Kornblut earlier this week.

According to the interview, Gerald is solid to the Volunteers if Butch Jones and his staff return in 2018.

Gerald is rated as the No. 12 overall junior college prospect for 2018, according to the 247Sports composite.

The Florence, S.C., native is returning to Columbia for an official visit in November.

South Carolina basketball gets ‘no respect, I tell ya’

Despite reaching the Final Four for the first time in school history last season, South Carolina’s men’s basketball team was picked to finish 11th in the conference on Wednesday at SEC Media Day.

With the Gamecocks losing three starters, returning starting forwards Chris Silva and Maik Kotsar and guard Hassani Gravett will be counted on to lead the team this season.

Gravett is the Gamecocks’ only returning guard from the 2016-17 team, though a trio of transfers should help the Gamecocks make up for the lost experience in the backcourt. South Carolina welcomes former Delaware standout Kory Holden and graduate transfer Frank Booker (Oklahoma/FAU) and Wesley Myers (Niagara/Maine) to the fold.

Former Gamecocks shine in NFL

Former South Carolina players Pharoh Cooper, Ryan Succop and Johnathan Joseph all earned Week 6 NFL Player of the Week honors on Wednesday.

Cooper, a wide receiver with the Los Angeles Rams, was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week, thanks to his 103-yard opening kickoff return for a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Succop earned AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for setting a new NFL record with 47 straight made field goals inside 50 yards. The Tennessee Titans kicker broke the record with 5 successful kicks against Indianapolis Colts on Monday night.

Joseph, a Houston Texans teammate of former South Carolina stars Jadeveon Clowney and Bruce Ellington, was named AFC Defensive Player of Week for his pick-6, 2-interception performance against the Cleveland Browns.

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