Steele: USC Is A National Title Contender

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By Sara Jane Harris

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) -- College football guru Phil Steele spoke on Charlotte's CBS radio affiliate this week and said he believes South Carolina has a chance to win the national title in 2013.

Steele was a guest on Charlotte's 610 AM The Fan on Thursday and was asked how he felt about South Carolina's upcoming season.

"I'd say not only the division but definitely a national title contender this year out of South Carolina. I think when you take a look at the three teams from the SEC that are battling for that top spot [In the SEC East], Georgia has the best offense, South Carolina the second best offense, Florida the third. Defensively I give Florida the edge, but South Carolina is close. They've got some guy named Jadeveon Clowney on the defense that puts them up there, and then Georgia is a distant third," Steele said.

Steele said South Carolina's match-up with UGA in Athens will determine how far the Gamecocks could go this year.

"Schedule wise, South Carolina does have to play at Georgia and really I feel that's the game that's going to determine the SEC East this year. If South Carolina can knock off Georiga in that game, they'll be favored in all the rest of their games this year. They really have the balance with a solid offense, Connor Shaw, I think the running game will be improved, remember Lattimore who they lose this year, was gone for half the season last year. The offensive line looks solid, with Clowney the defense is good, and then as mentioned they're probably only going to be an underdog in one game this year and that's a slight underdog at Georgia. So if they win Sept. 7, look out for South Carolina. They could be a team that would be favored in all the rest of their games. And as we saw in last year's SEC title game, it could be a good battle," said Steele.

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