COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Jake Bentley threw for four touchdowns, Rico Dowdle scored twice and South Carolina beat Coastal Carolina 49-15 Saturday in a season opener for each team.
The Gamecocks didn’t show any sign of their historical pattern of letting smaller opponents hang around. South Carolina scored in the first three minutes, twice in the first 10 and put the game away on its third touchdown with 6:03 to go before halftime.
South Carolina rolled up 557 yards of offense and six different players scored. Receiver Deebo Samuel, recovered from a broken leg that ended his season after just three games last year, made a one-handed grab in the corner of the end zone.
Top South Carolina defensive lineman D.J. Wonnum injured his left ankle in the third quarter and was taken to the locker room. He did not return and there was no immediate word on the injury.
South Carolina: The Gamecocks’ new up-tempo offense only displayed itself a couple of times, but there was no need to show off everything with so much on the horizon. They needed to take care of an undermanned opponent right away and did so.
Coastal Carolina: It was the expected result for a very young team that only moved into the FBS a year ago. The Chanticleers may be another season away from really competing in the Sun Belt.
South Carolina: The Gamecocks host a crucial game in the SEC East race when they host No. 3 Georgia next Saturday.
Coastal Carolina: The Chanticleers host UAB on Saturday in their home opener.