Originally posted on Leftover Hot Dog  |  Last updated 8/19/12

Here are some questions from Crystal Ball Run, on the Bloguin network, on South Carolina football. Through our answers we provide insight on the Gamecocks football team in our answers....check it out after the jump...

1. Give us the lowdown on Marcus Lattimore and his recovery. Any guesses as to his share of the carries this year?

Marcus Lattimore is fine and very close to 100%. He has been limited in preseason practices but as the featured back that is common at USC to avoid injury.

In 2011, the Gamecocks leaned heavily on Lattimore and his abilities to grind up yards. He averaged around 23 carries a game. This will not be the case in 2012 as the Gamecocks have a very deep stable of running backs. Look for Lattimore to get 15-18 carries a game and the additional load to be spread amongst Kenny Miles, Shon Carson, Brandon Wilds and maybe Mike Davis.

2. Cornerback Akeem Auguste is returning after a season cut short in 2011 by a foot injury. How important is his presence in a rebuilding secondary?

The Gamecocks need him as the depth in the secondary is a concern. Auguste is a senior and the Gamecocks not only need his abilities but his leadership too. Having him as one of the locked down corners in 2012 would be a big boost for USC as they fight their way through the SEC.

3. Alshon Jeffrey had his ups and downs in college, but there was no denying his talent at receiver. Who will be the biggest threat in the passing game this year?

Honestly it is hard to say as the stage is open. The question is who will step up and help the passing game.

The likely suspects are Ace Sanders or Damiere Byrd. But the Gamecocks have a stud freshman receiver in Shaq Roland and he could be the “go-to-guy” but he is just a true freshman so you don’t want to expect too much from him.

One area to watch in regards to this question is the tight ends unit as the Gamecocks are loaded there and you could see some two-tight end sets.  Maybe a Jerrell Adams or Drew Owens becomes the threat.

Stay tuned…

4. Can we safely assume Connor Shaw is the man under center, or do you foresee a scenario where Steve Spurrier could go back to quarterback-rotating ways?

No. The keys to the offense belongs to Connor Shaw as long as he stays healthy. If he gets hurt then the dreaded rotating of QBs could emerge. But in Connor Shaw, Gamecock nation trusts.

5. Give us a reason to believe South Carolina is the team that can end the SEC West's current run on top of the conference?

Since I have to go with just one reason I will say the play of the lines. On both offense and defense, the Gamecocks line play is poised to have the ability to win the trench battles every game out. As everyone who knows college football will say, if you can control the line of play then you have a strong likelihood to win ball games.

The USC offensive line is deep and has the big bodies needed to win in the SEC. The defensive line, well, two names should some it up – Jadeveon Clowney and Devin Taylor. Enough said on the defensive line.
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Thanks to CBR for allowing us to give our thoughts. Do check out their blog and look for the above to be on their site in the coming days.

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