Cavaliers: Gamecocks Play ACC-Style of Football
The South Carolina football team may play in the SEC, but the Cavaliers say stylistically, they belong in the ACC.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Belk Bowl between Virginia and South Carolina will be a battle of ACC vs. SEC.
Senior safety Juan Thornhill says, "ACC is more like a speed conference, and SEC is powerhouse, big guys, who like to run the football. South Carolina, they belong in the ACC, kinda, because they play like everybody else in the ACC. they love to throw the ball."
And they'll throw it to everybody.
"They actually will spread out their tight ends and use them in 11 Personnel package," says Thornhill. "There's two right ends out there, and they use them as receivers, so that's a little bit different for us."
Gamecocks quarterback Jake Bentley threw for five touchdowns and 510 passing yards against Clemson, but don't sleep on the ground attack.
Senior linebacker Chris Peace says, "The run game is real capable. They capped off a few long runs on the year. They're strong at the point of attack. If you're not careful, they can run it down your throat just as easy."
South Carolina also has an ACC flavor on the defensive side of the ball.
Senior offensive lineman Jake Fieler says, "I see a lot of similarities in their front, and Miami's front, and UNC's front. They got very similar guys up there."
Junior quarterback Bryce Perkins says, "NC State. As far as the size, and talent, and the structure of their defense is kind of similar."
"They're a good team," says senior receiver Olamide Zaccheaus, "Athletic. Very athletic. they're very similar to ACC Defenses, and opponents that we have."
The 'Hoos have had a lot of time to make the comparisons, with a span of five weeks from the end of the regular season to the bowl game.
Zaccheaus says, "Having more time can help you a lot, or hurt you a lot. So we're just trying to make sure it helps us a lot."
Perkins adds, "We can add new plays, or take some out, and we can get down to 100% confidence level on the script."
Virginia and South Carolina play on December 29th in Charlotte.