Independence Bowl Preview Capsule
The Associated Press
Dec. 26, 2014
South Carolina (6-6) vs. Miami (6-6) at Shreveport, Louisiana, 3:30 p.m. (ABC)
Line: Miami by 3½.
Series Record: Miami leads South Carolina 8-5-2.
WHAT'S AT STAKE
It's been a disappointing season for both Miami and South Carolina and now each program hopes to salvage some pride during Saturday's game. Miami is trying to snap a four-game bowl losing streak and hasn't won in the postseason since the 2006 MPC Computers Bowl over Nevada. South Carolina is trying for a school record four-game bowl winning streak.
South Carolina RB Mike Davis vs. Miami RB Duke Johnson: Though the two won't actually meet on the field, they're both vitally important to each team's offense. Davis has had a mildly disappointing season, with 927 yards rushing after 1,183 last season. The 5-foot-9, 223-pound junior has already said he's leaving after the season for the NFL. Johnson, a 5-foot-9, 206-pound junior, has had a breakout season with 1,520 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
South Carolina: QB Dylan Thompson. The senior has thrown for 3,280 yards, 24 touchdowns and 11 interceptions this season. He'll be down one receiver on Saturday — coach Steve Spurrier confirmed junior Shaq Roland left the team earlier in the week.
Miami: QB Brad Kaaya. The true freshman has been very good for the Hurricanes, throwing for 2,962 yards, 25 touchdowns and 11 touchdowns. He's averaging 14.7 yards per completion, which ranks first among freshman quarterbacks.
FACTS & FIGURES
This is the first time Miami and South Carolina will face each other since 1987. Miami won that game 20-16. The Hurricanes have a six-game winning streak against the Gamecocks dating back to 1947. ... Miami has a 17-3 record over the past three years when RB Duke Johnson scores a rushing touchdown. ... South Carolina has a 7-12 all-time record in bowl games. Ten of those 19 postseason appearances have happened since 2001. The program had just one bowl appearance (1995) from 1988 to 2001. ... Teams from the Southeastern Conference have a 13-3 record in the Independence Bowl. Atlantic Coast Conference teams have a 2-4-1 all-time mark.