South Carolina will be without three players — including one of its most explosive playmakers — Saturday against Vanderbilt.
USC running back Juju McDowell will be “unavailable” for the contest, per an athletic department spokesperson. John Whittle of 247Sports first reported the news.
South Carolina later announced the Gamecocks will be without receiver Jalen Brooks and offensive lineman Dylan Wonnum.
McDowell has been a bright spot for a South Carolina offense that has lacked consistency over the first six contests of the season. The Georgia native is second on the team in the rushing with 187 yards on 41 carries. His 71 yards against East Carolina helped carry USC to a dramatic road victory.
The Gamecocks currently rank 12th in rushing, 13th in scoring and 13th in total offense among Southeastern Conference teams.
With McDowell sidelined, the Gamecocks should turn to tailbacks MarShawn Lloyd and ZaQuandre White. Starting running back Kevin Harris will likely remain the bell cow of the bunch, but Lloyd and White’s usage rates should go up.
Lloyd is currently fourth on the team in rushing with 125 yards on 36 carries, but he’s largely been the third back off the bench of late. White ran for 128 of his 167 yards on the year in South Carolina’s season opener against Eastern Illinois. However, the one-time Florida State tailback hasn’t recorded an attempt since a Week 3 matchup at No. 1 Georgia.
Brooks has been one of South Carolina’s more consistent field-stretchers at receiver this fall. The former Wingate receiver is second on the team in receiving yards and third in catches.
Wonnum has appeared in every game this season at right tackle. He’s expected to be replaced by Tyshawn Wannamaker per South Carolina radio man Todd Ellis after he tweaked his back at practice.
Ellis also noted both Brooks and McDowell are out for non-injury-related reasons.
What channel is South Carolina vs. Vanderbilt?
Who: Vanderbilt Commodores (2-4, 0-2 SEC) at South Carolina Gamecocks (3-3, 0-3 SEC)
When: 4 p.m. Saturday
Where: Williams-Brice Stadium (77,559) in Columbia, S.C.
TV: SEC Network