Shane Beamer and the South Carolina Gamecocks have a bit of momentum entering 2023. The Gamecocks finished the 2022 regular season with back-to-back top-10 wins over Tennessee and Clemson. Heading into 2023, the Gamecocks will look to continue building behind a strong, pass-heavy offense and one of the best special teams units in the country.
South Carolina Season Predictions: Predicting the Game-by-Game Results
Using groupthink, College Football Network analysts have painstakingly gone through every game for every team in the SEC and across the country.
Picking these games straight up with a projected score using the rosters as up-to-date as the last spring practice, the South Carolina season predictions indicate what fans can possibly expect for the Gamecocks in 2023.
Week 1 — South Carolina vs. North Carolina: Win, 32-30 (1-0)
As you can see, our analysts were split on this one. In fact, it resulted in the closest average result that we picked for any game involving an SEC team all season. The tiebreaker here was Cam Mellor giving the Gamecocks a 35-34 victory in Charlotte.
This game could be a shootout, with Drake Maye and Spencer Rattler each knowing their defenses will struggle to stop the other. As is the case with South Carolina in a lot of these toss-ups, it could come down to a special teams play or two.
That bodes well for the Gamecocks.
Week 2 — South Carolina vs. Furman: Win, 45-4 (2-0)
South Carolina gets the Paladins of Furman for its home opener. Unsurprisingly, all three of us see this as a blowout win for the Gamecocks.
In this one, I’m watching for the linebacker and edge rotation on defense and the receiver and running back rotation on offense. I’m also anxious to see if the hype around freshman quarterback LaNorris Sellers is real or just offseason talk. If it’s real, he’ll play extensively in this one.
Week 3 — South Carolina @ Georgia: Loss, 23-37 (2-1, 0-1 SEC)
Our prediction here has less to do with the Gamecocks and more to do with the opposition. It simply doesn’t matter who’s quarterbacking the Bulldogs at this point, as they’re the most talented team top to bottom in the country.
In contrast to past years, I think the Gamecocks will score a few points in this one. Georgia has outscored the Gamecocks 36-0 in the “middle 8” of the last three meetings. To have any chance of pulling off the upset, the Gamecocks will need to stand strong just before and right after halftime.
Week 4 — South Carolina vs. Mississippi State: Win, 28-26 (3-1, 1-1 SEC)
Once again, our analysts were divided on this one, all picking a close game. Mellor was in the minority here, as the only one to pick against the Gamecocks at home. I personally think home-field advantage matters in this matchup of teams that haven’t met very often in the past.
The Gamecocks boast a much better offense, while the Bulldogs have one of the best defenses in the league. Because of this, I think this game comes down to special teams, and anytime it comes down to special teams, the game usually swings in South Carolina’s favor.
Week 5 — South Carolina @ Tennessee: Loss, 26-33 (3-2, 1-2 SEC)
As we’ll likely see at SEC media days, the South Carolina loss still stings for Tennessee fans, players, and coaches alike. So, Tennessee likely has this one circled on its schedule. As I’ve said before in a few of these previews, I’m not sure it matters much who the quarterback is in Josh Heupel’s system.
While Joe Milton will take home most of the headlines, I believe it’s Tennessee’s ability to run the ball that will separate the Volunteers in this matchup in Rocky Top.
Week 7 — South Carolina vs. Florida: Win, 31-22 (4-2, 2-2 SEC)
None of our team is extraordinarily high on the Florida Gators this season. First, the Gators struggled even with Anthony Richardson last season, and the early returns from the quarterback position are… not great.
South Carolina was embarrassed in Gainesville last season, and it was one of their worst offensive outputs of the Shane Beamer era. Under Beamer, the Gamecocks have typically rebounded the next season well, and all three of us expect that to be the case here.
Week 8 — South Carolina @ Missouri: Win, 25-19 (5-2, 3-2 SEC)
Weird things happen when the teams from the two Columbias meet. You could argue that the Gamecocks have looked worse against Missouri under Beamer than against any other team. However, we think this one will go a different direction, even if it is fairly ugly.
Once again in this one, we see a superior South Carolina offense matched up against a team with a strong defense that isn’t likely to put up many points themselves. South Carolina’s defense just needs to keep them in the game in this one, and the arm talent of Spencer Rattler should lead the Gamecocks to victory.
Week 9 — South Carolina @ Texas A&M: Loss, 26-27 (5-3, 3-3 SEC)
The math for how we arrived at this conclusion is a bit weird, so bear with me. I’m the only one of our analysts to pick the Aggies in this one. However, I gave them an 11-point victory, pulling our score average in favor of the Aggies.
Normally in this situation, I’d cave to the majority, but as the South Carolina guy here, I’m sticking with my guns. Shane Beamer delivered South Carolina its first victory over Texas A&M in school history last season, but I don’t expect that to happen this year at Kyle Field.
Playing the Aggies on the road is just too difficult, and in a season full of toss-up wins, I’ve got to give the Gamecocks a toss-up loss.
Week 10 — South Carolina vs. Jacksonville State: Win, 36-18 (6-3, 3-3 SEC)
All of us have South Carolina dispatching the other Gamecocks easily in a win that will give the group from Columbia bowl eligibility. Jacksonville State represents one of the easier games on South Carolina’s difficult non-conference schedule, but that doesn’t mean the Gamecocks from Alabama will not pose a threat.
Last season, in its last year as an FCS School, Jacksonville State went 9-1 against FCS teams, posting strong numbers both on the offensive and defensive side of the ball.
Week 11 — South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt: Win, 35-17 (7-3, 4-3 SEC)
Even some of the worst South Carolina teams of the last 15 years have managed to beat the Commodores. All of us have this being one of the bigger blowouts in a series of mostly close games despite South Carolina’s dominant record.
Vanderbilt quarterback AJ Swann is experienced, but he’ll have to step up his play this season if the Commodores expect to win more than a handful of games. Again, we trust Rattler here and expect him to have a huge day.
Week 12 — South Carolina vs. Kentucky: Win, 26-21 (8-3, 5-3 SEC)
These are the types of games South Carolina needs to win consistently to take the next step in the SEC pecking order. Under Beamer, the Gamecocks and Wildcats have developed a strong rivalry marked by trash-talking and back-and-forth games.
In my opinion, one that is shared by most of our analysts, Kentucky quarterback Devin Leary is one of the best in the SEC. However, the Kentucky offensive line still has a few issues, and I expect South Carolina’s defense to be able to get after the quarterback.
Week 13 — South Carolina vs. Clemson: Loss, 29-30 (8-4, 5-3 SEC)
Shane Beamer won some support among South Carolina fans last season after beating Clemson in Death Valley to end a six-year drought. These teams seem a bit more even now, but Clemson comes in with more talent from top to bottom.
The jury is still out on Clemson quarterback Cade Klubnik, but he doesn’t necessarily need to be an All-American to beat the Gamecocks. Even last season, the Gamecocks had no answer for Will Shipley at running back, and if the Tigers ride him, it will be a long day for the Gamecock defense.
Still, our experts are split, and all have this being a close game. Oli Hodgkinson is giving this one to the Gamecocks at home.