Created: Sat, 05 Oct 2013 11:50:00 EST
Updated: Sun, 06 Oct 2013 11:10:43 EST
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) -- South Carolina beat Kentucky Saturday night without star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
Clowney missed the Gamecocks' Thursday night practice with bruised ribs but was expected to be ready to play against the Wildcats.
The junior was announced as a starter before the game started.
Gamecock head coach Steve Spurrier said he thought Clowney would play until he had a conversation with him a few minutes before the team ran out to the field.
"We we're thinking he was going to play, right before the game he told us. He told me he couldn't play, that his ribs hurt and he couldn't run. I said that's fine, you don't have to play and we'll move on. He may not be able to play next week, I don't know, but I know we're not going to worry about it. I can assure you that," said Spurrier.
Spurrier said he trusts players when they tell him they can't play.
"If he wants to play we'll come welcome him to the team," said Spurrier.
USC defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward said he also didn't know he was going to miss the game.
"Right before the game coach Spurrier had a talk with him and he told him that he was having some trouble running with his ribs so, we found out right before the game," said Ward.
Running back Mike Davis said he had a conversation with Clowney before the game but the defensive end did not mention not being able to play.
"He didn't say nothing about not playing. Throughout the whole week he was just telling me his ribs hurt. He got on the field (Saturday during warm-ups) and he might have hurt himself some more i guess," said Davis.