Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

HOLD THE HARDWARE; No Trophy Will Be at Stake When Missouri Meets South Carolina on Saturday

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

HOLD THE HARDWARE; No Trophy Will Be at Stake When Missouri Meets South Carolina on Saturday

Article excerpt

As he is apt to do, South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier in the spring floated an idea that had been percolating in his busy mind. - Since his school and Mizzou both are in towns named Columbia, games between the new Southeastern Conference Eastern Division rivals, he suggested, ought to have a "Battle Of The Columbias" trophy associated with them to stoke interest. - But at least for the time being, he said Sunday, the idea has been doused. - "I think the presidents (of the schools) talked about that earlier and maybe decided we have enough big games, all of us," he said during a teleconference with reporters, adding, "Maybe we just need to play each other within the division and go from there." - Not that that diminishes the stakes of MU's game at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at No. 7 South Carolina, the first time either school has played at the home of the other. The only previous meetings were Mizzou victories in the 1979 Hall of Fame Bowl (24-14) and 2005 Independence Bowl (38- 31), where MU rallied from 21 down. - In its SEC road debut, Mizzou (2-1, 0-1 SEC) will be seeking to step into the SEC East race with its first true road win over a top 10 team since a 14-3 victory over No. 9 Mississippi State in Jackson, Miss., in 1981. - The Gamecocks (3-0, 1-0) want to stay in range of No. 14 Florida (3-0, 2-0) and keep pace with defending East champ Georgia (3-0, 1-0), ranked No. 5 and a 41-20 victor over MU two weeks ago. - "Looking forward to playing Missouri, a very good team, a team that played Georgia nip and tuck til Georgia (created turnovers late) and pulled away," said Spurrier, adding that he'd studied only MU's defense so far and was impressed with what he called "a fierce pass rush" and added, "We'll have our hands full trying to block these guys." - Like MU, South Carolina's quarterback situation is fuzzy after Saturday night. Mizzou started redshirt freshman Corbin Berkstresser in place of injured James Franklin (right shoulder inflammation), and it's uncertain if Franklin will be ready to return Saturday. - South Carolina starter Connor Shaw reinjured his right shoulder on a nasty hit in the Gamecocks' 49-6 win over Alabama-Birmingham, and Spurrier said Sunday it was "wait and see" how he'd recover from what Spurrier said "could be a hairline fracture in there." - Backup Dylan Thompson, a sophomore who has earned Spurrier's confidence, would get the nod if Shaw can't go.

QUOTE QUOTA

The brash and blunt Ol' Ball Coach has been known to fill a notebook, and he was in fine form Sunday, a day after he called his 200th collegiate win "one of the closest 49-6 ballgames I've ever been around."

- On the margin of victory despite UAB having the ball for more than 36 minutes: "We scored touchdowns; we didn't have to kick a bunch of little field goals."

- On South Carolina's run blocking: "Not very good most of the time. We don't really move the line of scrimmage, you know what I mean? When the ball's snapped, some of our guys go backwards. …

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