Hurricane Ian threat pushes up SC State-South Carolina game

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South Carolina Gamecocks and the South Carolina State Bulldogs will play on Thursday night instead of Saturday due to Hurricane Ian. 

South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner said the approaching storm looked like it would impact the area by the weekend, making the move essential to keeping fans, officials and teams safe. 

The Gamecocks are seeking back-to-back wins in a season for the first time since coach Shane Beamer’s first two games in his debut season a year ago. FCS opponent South Carolina State is looking for its first-ever win over an FBS program.

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South Carolina quarterback Spencer Rattler (7) scrambles away from Charlotte defensive lineman Amir Siddiq (1) during the first half of an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Columbia, S.C.
(Artie Walker Jr.)

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

South Carolina hopes to win back-to-back games in the same season for the first time since coach Shane Beamer’s first two games leading the program in 2021. A win for South Carolina State would be a tremendous upset and the Bulldogs first win over an FCS team.

WHY DID THE GAME MOVE?

The game is being played Thursday instead of Saturday due to Hurricane Ian. South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner said the approaching storm looked like it would impact the area by the weekend, making the move essential to keeping fans, officials and teams safe.

KEY MATCHUP

South Carolina RB MarShawn Lloyd vs. South Carolina State’s defense. Lloyd ran for a career-high 169 yards and three touchdowns last week in the 56-20 win over Charlotte. 

Look for the Gamecocks to stick to the ground to gain some confidence before jumping back into the Southeastern Conference at No. 7 Kentucky on Oct. 8. The Bulldogs are last in the MEAC, giving up 257 yards rushing a game this season.

ARKANSAS’ CAM LITTLE MISSES GAME-WINNING FIELD GOAL, KICK ATTEMPT HITS VERY TOP OF UPRIGHT

South Carolina running back MarShawn Lloyd (1) looks for running room against Charlotte defensive back Valerian Agbaw (9) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022 in Columbia, S.C.

South Carolina running back MarShawn Lloyd (1) looks for running room against Charlotte defensive back Valerian Agbaw (9) during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022 in Columbia, S.C.
(Artie Walker Jr.)

PLAYERS TO WATCH

South Carolina State: LB B.J. Davis leads the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and is tied for sixth in the FCS with 33 tackles. He was named MEAC linebacker of the week after notching 17 tackles, including 12 solo stops, in the Bulldogs’ loss to North Carolina A&T last week.

South Carolina coach Shane Beamer questions a penalty call during the second half of the team's NCAA college football game against Charlotte on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Columbia, S.C.

South Carolina coach Shane Beamer questions a penalty call during the second half of the team’s NCAA college football game against Charlotte on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, in Columbia, S.C.
(Artie Walker Jr.)

South Carolina: QB Spencer Rattler found his footing against Charlotte, throwing for 187 yards on 17-of-23 passing. Look for the Gamecocks to turn him loose more often this week with the Bulldogs allowing 217 yards and two TD passes a game this season.

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FACTS & FIGURES

South Carolina has lost three games to FCS opponents in its history, the last coming to The Citadel, 23-20, in 2015 after Steve Spurrier resigned midseason. … South Carolina State coach Buddy Pough was a former Gamecocks assistant under Brad Scott and Lou Holtz before taking over the Bulldogs in 2002. … Pough is the school’s all-time leader in victories with a 144. … South Carolina scored on their first eight possessions in the win over Charlotte, the most points produced in Shane Beamer’s two seasons as coach. … South Carolina State will receive $500,000 for coming to Williams-Brice Stadium. … It could be a soggy Saturday as the game is likely to be impacted by Hurricane Ian’s rainfall, forecast to move inland through the Southeast and reach the Palmetto State by the weekend.

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