COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Cory Boyd tied a school-record three
rushing touchdowns, but South Carolina's offensive struggles
continued as the Gamecocks barely escaped with a 27-20 win over
Division I-AA Wofford on Saturday night.
All Boyd's scores came in the first half when the Gamecocks led
24-10 and looked like they were finally playing the kind of ball
coach Steve Spurrier wanted. Along with Boyd's production, star
receiver Sidney Rice had 110 yards receiving in the half and new
quarterback Syvelle Newton looked in control in his first start
under center since 2004. Newton replaced the suspended Blake
Mitchell in the starting lineup.
But Wofford clamped down in the second half and turned the
Gamecocks' lackadaisical play against them. Justin Franklin's
fourth-quarter interception led to Nick Robinson's 28-yard field
goal that cut things to 27-13. Then the Terriers rushed punter Ryan
Succop, forcing to throw the ball away to avoid a safety.
It took one play to stun everyone left at Williams-Brice Stadium
as Josh Collier's 25-yard TD pass to Andy Strickland drew the
Terriers to 27-20 with 4:43 left.
Wofford had one last chance, driving to South Carolina's 10 with
:29 to go. On fourth-and-5, the Gamecocks' Dakota Walker knocked
Collier's pass attempt into the air and linebacker Cody Wells
caught it and South Carolina (2-1) escaped a huge embarrassment.
Spurrier was furious last week watching South Carolina's offense
stumble through an 18-0 loss to Georgia -- he called the team stupid
in postgame remarks -- and changed about everything he could with
seven new starters. More changes might by ahead.
Boyd had scoring runs of 10, 1 and 40 yards in the opening half
to tie the school record of TD runs in a game last accomplished by
Dondrial Pinkins against Vanderbilt in 2003.
Newton, used by Spurrier as a triple-threat offensive weapon at
quarterback; running back; and receiver last season, kept control
of things in his first start at quarterback since 2004. Just as
importantly -- he got the ball to Rice, the Gamecocks unquestioned
star who had six 100-yard plus receiving games last year but came
into this one with only five catches for 44 yards.
Rice made a stunning, one-handed grab for 45 yards in the first
quarter and Boyd followed with his 10-yard TD run.
Rice finished with seven catches for 151 yards.
Wofford, of the Southern Conference, looked overmatched. But the
Terriers grew stronger throughout the game, rushing for 290 yards.
Kevious Johnson had 129 yards and a touchdown.
The loss dropped the Terriers to 1-9 all-time against Division