South Carolina dropped a tough one against Florida yesterday, giving up three touchdowns to the Gators in the fourth quarter to lose 38-27. Their bid for a second straight top-ten upset unraveled in frustrating fashion, as officials seemed to miss clear penalties on two of the biggest plays of the game. Naturally, this infuriated Will Muschamp, who really wanted to put one over on his former school.
Dameon Pierce tied the game in the second quarter with a 75-yard touchdown run, though Florida tackle Jean Delance got out of his stance early and Pierce reached the end zone thanks to his wideout Tyrie Cleveland committing a holding penalty for over 30 yards. Florida then made it a two-possession game halfway through the fourth quarter on a short touchdown pass from Kyle Trask to Kyle Pitts. Once again, Pitts was the beneficiary of an obvious penalty, as an uncalled pick play gave him an easy score.
(Obviously, there are uncalled penalties on every team in every football game, including some committed by South Carolina yesterday.)
That pick play set Muschamp off, as he picked up an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty a few drives later for berating officials.
Muschamp spoke about his meltdown after the game, and he took issue with the officials dropping a flag on him from 40 yards away. “The guy ran 40 yards away and dropped the flag,” Muschamp said. “I have no idea. I’d rather him drop it on my feet. ... Drop it on my feet next time.” He was obviously pissed, and he muttered under his breath, “Gutless.”