The South Carolina Gamecocks kept their BCS bowl chances alive with a 31-17 victory at home against the Clemson Tigers. The Gamecocks have a school-record winning streak over their archrivals. And quarterback Connor Shaw finished his South Carolina career without losing a single game at home. All that, plus a potential SEC East title, in one night.
At the half, South Carolina led 17-10. The Gamecocks played through Shaw, who threw and passed for a touchdown in the first half, while Clemson's Tajh Boyd threw for 142 yards passing in the first half, going 9-of-11 while running for Clemson's only touchdown of the half.
After South Carolina turned the ball over on downs, the teams exchanged punts. Clemson then drove down the field 88 yards for a touchdown, with 68 of the yards coming by way of either the arm or legs of Boyd. On the touchdown run by Roderick McDowell, McDowell's knee collided with the head of Gamecock safety Chaz Elder, who was down on the play and did not return.
South Carolina responded in kind, with a 75-yard touchdown drive led by Shaw. A Clemson fumble gave South Carolina the football, but their drive did very little. However, on the punt return, Clemson fumbled to give the ball back to South Carolina. Then, the dagger. Running back Pharoh Cooper threw a touchdown pass out of the wildcat to put the Gamecocks up two scores.
Box Score Hero: Connor Shaw: 14-of-26 152 yards, one passing touchdown. 22 carries, 94 yards rushing including sacks.
Also: Sammy Watkins, who had 7 catches for 93 yards.
Rankings Ramifications: South Carolina could climb several spots in the BCS, possibly past Baylor or Stanford. Clemson will drop out of the top ten.
But Did They Cover? South Carolina came into the game as three-point favorites, so yes, they covered.
For More On This Game:
For more Tigers football, visit Clemson community Shakin' The Southland.
Next Week's Schedule: South Carolina has hopes for an at-large BCS bid. Clemson will also play next in a bowl game of their own.