Gamecocks kick off practice without QB Garcia

David Goldman/AP Photo
Garcia

COLUMBIA --- South Carolina opened spring practice Tuesday without starting quarterback Stephen Garcia, who coach Steve Spurrier said was suspended from workouts for a week for violating team rules.

Spurrier wouldn't specify what Garcia did, only saying it happened sometime last year. Backup QB Andrew Clifford also is suspended for a week.

"Sometimes when players are removed hopefully they appreciate the privilege they have practicing with their teammates. It's no fun not being on the team, from what I understand. So hopefully, all these guys will understand, if they want to be on the team, just follow the simple rules we have," Spurrier said after practice.

Garcia now has missed at least part of three of his five spring practices on campus. Three run-ins with the law during his first 15 months at South Carolina caused him to miss all off-season practices in 2007 and 2008.

Garcia has started every game for the past two seasons, leading the Gamecocks to their first Southeastern Conference title game last season. But he threw five interceptions as South Carolina lost its final two games to Auburn in the SEC title game and Florida State in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.

The Gamecocks return 15 of 22 starters including first-team all-SEC running back Marcus Lattimore, wide receiver Alshon Jeffery and defensive end Devin Taylor.

"I feel like we can do a lot more than what we did. Nine wins? I think we can do 13, 14," senior cornerback Akeem Auguste said.

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