Spurrier and Son Hope to Give South Carolina Improved Season

HOOVER, Ala. (AP) -- One thing's certain at South Carolina this season -- a Spurrier will call the plays.

Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier told media at the preseason SEC football gathering his son, Steve Jr., would put together the team's weekly gameplan this fall -- although dad vowed to have plenty of input.

Spurrier said his son has grown in his coaching skills since he became a graduate assistant at Florida in the mid-1990s. The Spurriers were together on the sidelines in 1996 when the Gators won a national championship.

Steve Jr. joined his father at South Carolina after the 2004 season as receivers coach.

Just last week, Spurrier told reporters in Columbia, S.C. that he would "oversee all the playcalling. I'm still the offensive coordinator. In fact, I plan to spend more time with the quarterbacks and the offense this year than maybe I have in three years."

Spurrier explained that his son's experience and the changing nature made it essential to delegate some aspects of the job. Gone are the days when Spurrier could signal in everything he needed watching from the sidelines.

Spurrier will likely have his hands full with South Carolina's inexperienced quarterbacks. Apparent first-teamer Tommy Beecher has spent three seasons with the Gamecocks, but has yet to start a game.

Behind him are inconsistent sophomore Chris Smelley, and incoming freshmen Aramis Hillary and Reid McCollum.

Stephen Garcia, a talented passer serving a university suspension this summer, could return next month if he successfully completes requirements given him by the school.

The Gamecocks open practice on Aug. 1. They'll start the season at home on Thursday, Aug. 28, with a night game against North Carolina State.

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