COLUMBIA - This wasn't the walkover most everyone expected.
This wasn't the game two years ago when South Carolina ended a heinous losing streak by beating New Mexico State by 31 points.
This definitely wasn't what the Gamecocks had in mind.
But say this for the team - South Carolina, which copied the scrappiness displayed by the Aggies - did just enough to grab a season-opening win Saturday.
Quarterback Corey Jenkins and running back Andrew Pinnock combined to rush for 208 yards and a touchdown, and former Washington-Wilkes standout Daccus Turman made a big impression in his first gamea as a Gamecock, rushing for a 2-yard score, to lead No. 22 South Carolina to a 34-24 win at Williams-Brice Stadium.
South Carolina coach Lou Holtz likely will have some concerns heading into next week's contest at Virginia.
Jenkins, for the most part, was not impressive through the air, going 9-of-18 passing for 166 yards, 44 of which came on a touchdown pass to James Adkisson.
"He missed a couple of reads, but he made a couple," said Holtz, who tied Bo Schembechler for ninth on the all-time Division 1-A career wins list with 234. "He threw the ball better after the first quarter. The offense called a nice game. From (the 25-yard line) to the 10, we had some trouble."
Luckily for Holtz, he had former Washington-Wilkes standout Turman on reserve.
On a fake field goal attempt early in the fourth quarter, holder Erik Kimrey took the snap, turned and found Turman for a six-yard gain and a first down.
Three plays later, Turman scored from two yards out to give the Gamecocks (1-0) a 26-17 lead.
"I really wasn't nervous," Turman said. "I knew it was going to be thrown to me. But I got a little nervous when it was coming at me. It was a good feeling to come out and be able to produce and help the team win."
On the other side of the ball, the Gamecocks' defense had a tough time stopping the Aggie's (0-1) option attack. Quarterback Buck Pierce ran the offense inspired by Nebraska to perfection, gaining 271 total yards (207 passing, 64 rushing) on offense.
"They had 68 plays and 419 yards," Holtz said. "That says it all."
Reach Josh Katzowitz at (706) 823-3216 or email@example.com.
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