SEC Football Preview: South Carolina Gamecocks vs. North Carolina Tar Heels

Finishing 7-6, or the inverse 6-7 is not an ideal way to finish a college football season. Those records are the pathway to fringe bowls like the Independence Bowl, and the Quick Lane Bowl.

A fresh start can erase all of the woes experienced during the 2014 season. Both the South Carolina Gamecocks and the North Carolina Tar Heels are getting the opportunity for a fresh start.

The 2015 season will begin with the Gamecocks going to Charlotte, North Carolina to play against the Tar Heels.

Right now neither of these teams are being looked at as having legitimate playoff potential.

The Gamecocks are facing an incredibly tough schedule, being they have to face off against five ranked teams (potentially more throughout the season) after struggling last year in the SEC with a 3-5 record.

Defensive issues were one of the main reasons the Gamecocks lost often. South Carolina allowed the 12th most points per game in the league and they were last in sacks in the SEC.

The Gamecocks brought in new defensive coordinator Jon Hoke, a former assistant under Steve Spurrier at Florida and the hope is he will revive the defense.  Along with Hoke, they have some new additions to the defense.

“We got some other new players in the defensive line, and we think are going to really help us,” said Gamecocks head coach Steve Spurrier.

On offense Connor Mitch will making his first start for the Gamecocks as quarterback. Offensively, the Gamecocks could be better as well and an improved running game from a rank of 83rd last year could help.

North Carolina had its struggles a year ago, especially on defense.  Those struggles were on display in their bowl game where they were manhandled by Rutgers in the Independence Bowl. The final score of that game was 40-21.

On offense, head coach and former Gator assistant Larry Fedora should have an offense back that should score points.

To hear what Steve Spurrier thinks about his new quarterback listen below:

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