August 23, 2007

Who needs to step up?

Steve Spurrier and the South Carolina Gamecocks are nine days away from taking the field for the first time in the 2007 season when the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns come to town. This article takes a look at five players who need to step up between now and the season opener for Carolina to take the step to the next level.

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Gurminder Thind, LG, 6-4, 293, Jr.., Mississauga, Ont.

No positions are currently under more scrutiny on the Carolina team than the offensive guard spots. Steve Spurrier and line coach John Hunt have turned to Thind to try to stabilize the left guard spot, moving him from the left tackle position he's played since arriving in Columbia four years ago. Thind reportedly made a good initial impression on the coaches during his first practice on the interior of the line, and he's now in competition for the starting spot.
James Thompson, RG, 6-3, 320, Sr., Sumter, S.C.

Thompson is competing with Lemuel Jeanpierre for the starting spot at right guard, and Thompson has received the majority of the first team snaps so far in fall practice. This is Thompson's fourth year in the program and now's the time for him to step the forefront. He's one of the strongest linemen on the team and has shown flashes of being a capable starter. He has battled inconsistency, however, and the coaches are counting on him to step up his performance. If not, look for Jeanpierre to overtake Thompson as the season progresses..