Just when you thought Deebo Samuel had run out of ways to score a touchdown, South Carolina’s do-everything senior added a new wrinkle in his final appearance at Williams-Brice Stadium.
Saturday, Samuel scooped up a fumble in the end zone off a botched punt attempt to highlight the Gamecocks’ 28-3 victory over Akron. It was one of 3 TDs Samuel scored in the first half, but the first time he’d ever scored like that.
Samuel was scoring at such a rapid pace that minutes later after this tweet, he made it obsolete when he caught his 16th career touchdown pass.
You expect Deebo to score special teams TDs, but not that.
15 receiving TDs
7 rushing TDs
4 KO returns TDS
1 fumble return TD https://t.co/bxMcIYWS6L
— GoGamecocks (@gogamecocks) December 1, 2018
Sure, Akron upset Big Ten West champion Northwestern, but this outcome was never in doubt.
That was hardly the point. Akron wasn’t part of South Carolina’s original schedule, but the two sides got together after Hurricane Florence forced the Gamecocks to cancel their Sept. 15 home game vs. Marshall.
So Saturday was merely another chance to impress the bowl scouts and pad statistics.
Did they accomplish either? Outside of Samuel and the defense, meh. The Gamecocks committed 4 turnovers in rainy conditions. Jake Bentley threw 2 interceptions and South Carolina also lost 2 fumbles, but it didn’t matter.
Akron committed 3 turnovers and never threatened beyond a first-quarter field goal. The Zips didn’t eclipse 50 yards rushing until late in the fourth quarter.
The victory was Will Muschamp’s 22nd at South Carolina, passing Steve Spurrier for the most in the first 3 years.
Muschamp will get one more chance to add to that total. The Gamecocks, widely thought to be headed to the Belk Bowl, will find out their official destination Sunday.