Shaw-shank Redemption: QB sparks USC to victory

Sophomore quarterback Connor Shaw provided the spark South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier was looking for when he named him the starter this week, and the No. 14 Gamecocks rolled to a 54-3 home victory over Kentucky on Saturday.

The Gamecocks (5-1, 3-1 SEC) fumbled the opening kickoff, leading to a Kentucky field goal, but South Carolina dominated from that point on.

Shaw, who replaced ineffective senior Stephen Garcia, became the first South Carolina quarterback since Blake Mitchell in 2006 to throw four touchdown passes in a game. Garcia had thrown four touchdown passes and nine interceptions through five games.

Two of Shaw’s touchdown passes went to Alshon Jeffery — the 18th and 19th of his career — to move Jeffery into a tie for second on the school’s all-time list behind Sidney Rice (23).

Marcus Lattimore rushed for 102 yards on 22 carries, as the Gamecocks improved to 10-0 when he has over 100 yards rushing.

The Wildcats (2-4, 0-3 SEC) sputtered on offense en route to their fourth consecutive loss — the last three to ranked opponents. Kentucky has not beaten a ranked team on the road since 2002 and its last road win against a ranked SEC team was in 1998.

Kentucky has lost its last six trips to Columbia, S.C., dating back to 1999. South Carolina has won 11 of the past 12 meetings overall, with the lone loss coming last season in Lexington, Ky.

Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier improved to 18-1 against Kentucky, his most wins against any opponent. He is 17-2 against Vanderbilt.

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