Steve Spurrier came out swinging at SEC Media Days on Tuesday morning.
“We are hoping to return to where we were the previous three years, a top 10 team, and I believe we have a fighting chance to get there,” South Carolina’s 11th-year head coach said as he made his record 23rd appearance at the conference’s annual kickoff event.
The Gamecocks started last season ranked No. 9 nationally but finished 7-6 and out of the Top 25.
“We’ve got some critics, but that’s what critics do, criticize every chance they get, and we gave them some chances last year,” Spurrier said. “There are people in Knoxville and Fayetteville still doing cartwheels over going 7-6. We were doing some cartwheels and high-fiving and hugging after that Independence Bowl game. It was a season that could have gone real south.”
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“We got rejuvenated. We got new life.”
Spurrier, 70, also addressed several questions about when he might retire.
“There are two people running for president who are within a year of me in age,” he said, referencing Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. “I’m not planning on quitting.”
Spurrier did not shed any light on his quarterback competition. Sophomore Connor Mitch is the frontrunner for the position and trying to stay ahead of Perry Orth and Michael Scarnecchia on the depth chart.
“We are going to keep competing during preseason practice,” he said. “We’ve got a month (of practice) before the first game, so we should be able to figure out who can play the best.”
He even hinted that he could play more than one quarterback.
“There’s nothing in the rulebook that says you can only play one,” he said.
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