So the author of Why South Carolina Will Beat Clemson was wrong about the outcome. I won’t fault someone too much for not being able to predict the future. I will fault the author for the logic behind his decision.
The author begins by pointing out that the heartbreaking loss to Boston College guaranteed us no chance of winning a championship or going to a big-time bowl — no news there, in his words, “it was the classic ‘Clemson Meltdown.’”
Unlike Clemson, however, South Carolina has a steady ball coach—the Head Ball Coach actually, who will look to right the ship and close out the year with a strong win. Coming off a much-needed bye week, look for the Gamecocks to be sharp in a game they need to win for bowl eligibility.
Thus, not only will Clemson be in their all-too-regular post-meltdown state of shock, South Carolina will be healthy, rested, and coached by a man not in perpetual lame-duck status.
Well that logic seems robust. But it can be made stronger, right? After pointing out that in Clemson’s loss to BC, home field advantage was not all that valuable, he gives USCe credit for home field advantage.
But the hatred for Clemson is real around Columbia, and I expect another raucous crowd, similar to the one Kentucky faced months ago.
On top of that, it’s just hard to imagine bowl season without Steve Spurrier.
So that’s the gist of the post. In hindsight, it was clearly wrong. However, when it was written it was still wrong and, well, pretty stupid.
First off, their are no “classic” Clemson meltdowns. Sure there are annual meltdowns, but they come in all shapes and flavors. Beside that point, what had happened in the 8 seasons prior to this one in which we came into the USCe game? Well I count 6 wins and only 1 of the two losses was in Columbia. So for as inconsistent as Bowden’s teams have been throughout the season, they have pretty consistently beaten South Carolina regardless of home field advantage.
And I’m not sure how “steady” Spurrier is or how that’s an advantage for Carolina. In 2005 he went 7-5 with some good wins and stupid losses. (Yeah yeah, those were the lame players from that last national champion coach they brought in.) In ’06 he went 8-5 with no stupid losses. But, coming into the Clemson game, the team was 6-5 with 3 of his own recruiting classes (but they’re still young!) with some good wins, some stupid losses, and a 4 game losing streak. If his performance at Carolina is the definition of steadiness, then I don’t exactly see how that is any kind of advantage.
But we can fall back on the incontrovertible logic that it is just too doggone hard, or damn near impossible, to imagine bowl season without Spurrier around. Perhaps it would be hard to imagine if there weren’t all those years where he wasn’t around for bowl season because he was failing in the NFL.
So I don’t get it. Or is the joke on me? Was the post supposed to be some kind of satire about the mental state of the average Carolina fan?