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Gamecock Wrap Up Final Practice Before Spring Break with video John Scott Jr.

VIDEO: John Scott Jr. Media Availability

March 07, 2019 GCF Staff Report

Gamecock Wrap Up Final Practice Before Spring Break


“I say all the time, it’s the AFC, the NFC and the SEC,” Scott said. “You better have some depth.

“You better be six or seven deep.”

Lucky for him, he inherited a good bit of it.

With the way South Carolina has broken up the defensive line coaching early, Scott has been working with a smaller group. Star tackle Javon Kinlaw is sidelined by hip surgery. Keir Thomas has also been limited, and might well be primarily an end in the team’s four-down look.

But Scott has started his first USC spring practice with the likes of Kobe Smith, Jabari Ellis, Rick Sandidge, Griffin Gentry, Zacch Pickens and Devontae Davis under his tutelage.

Considering that group includes a returning starter, two blue chippers and eventually will get Kinlaw back, all to fill two spots, it’s not a bad position for the coach to be in.

“In this league, you better have some depth,” Scott said. “We have some guys that are going to be really, really big contributors not out there right now. But it’s a great opportunity to have some younger guys get quality depth.”

USC defensive coordinator Travaris Robinson called the front the most talented part of USC’s defense.

Scott said he treats that front as the foundation of the defense. He aims to strengthen it — last year, opponents’ ran for 4.6 yards per carry, a 21 percent increase from the previous season. The coach noted with modern offenses, defensive linemen are almost always tasked with playing run first because of the proliferation of RPOs.

That’s different from life in the NFL, though that’s changing, and his experience there came with some lessons.

“My two years in the NFL, I probably learned more football than I had ever learned,” Scott said. “Just the amount of time I had to study and really dive into what’s going on. You don’t get that amount of time in college.”

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