The Daily Gamecock

Gamecock football coordinators prepare with 10 days to kickoff, say practice will determine play time

South Carolina football held an open practice on Wednesday as Head Football Coach Shane Beamer continues to prepare his team for his head coaching debut on Sept. 4 against Eastern Illinois. 

“Practice is everything — that’s the mindset that we have,” Offensive Coordinator Marcus Satterfield said. He is continuing to work with his players with just 10 days remaining until kickoff. 

A starting quarterback for the home opener still hasn't been named, as sophomore quarterback Luke Doty injured himself and Zeb Noland transitioned from his role as graduate assistant to playing for the team. 

Doty was at practice on Wednesday wearing a walking boot and using crutches.

Satterfield said he wanted to establish a starting quarterback "sooner rather than later." 

"I think that we’re doing our due diligence right now just to make sure we’re getting as much information on these guys as we possibly can," Satterfield said. 

The most important traits of a quarterback include arm talent, mobility and accuracy, Satterfield said. "You  have to have the ability to extend plays, especially in this league," he said. 

Throughout Noland's first week as a player, Satterfield said he integrated into the quarterback room well. 

“As far as the scheme and the knowledge of the system, he just was plugged right in," Satterfield said of Noland. "He already had a really good grasp — he’s a coach’s son, he’s a quarterback, he’s played a lot of football, he’s been in a lot of systems.” 

Defensive Coordinator Clayton White detailed his vision for the defense this season. 

“The main thing we want to put on the football field is a group of guys that when they play on Saturdays so that (fans) can say ‘that defense plays hard, they are flying to the football, they play for each other, they play for the team.’” 

White said there are 15 to 17 players the coaches trust at this stage.

“I would say the guy that's grown the most for me ... is Alex Huntley," White said. "He has completely shown us that he has the ability to be a big guy that can move around and make plays up front.” 

In addition to the redshirt freshman defensive lineman, White also said the linebacker tandem of sophomore Mohamed Kaba and redshirt freshman Debo Williams are standout players who continue to improve.

Both coordinators preached the importance of practice in securing play time in various positions that are still currently up for grabs. 

“Every single week we’re trying to identify the guys that we want to play in certain packages,” White said. “Your mistakes show up on the scoreboard in the defensive backfield.”