The way it works

This tweaked and improved prediction device allows you, the fan, to know what to expect from a hypothetical South Carolina-Clemson football game each and every week leading up to the actual squabble for braggin' rights on Nov. 27 in Clemson.

The set-up

South Carolina's BRB status flip-flopped into the red (but not garnet) last week because the Gamecocks at Kentucky were unable to win a road game they were supposed to win. Finally, ugly or not, they broke through Saturday night without Marcus Lattimore and with a strong second half in their 21-7 win at Vanderbilt. The game has meaning beyond the mismatch, giving South Carolina extra confidence against Florida and Clemson. Nice win for the Tigers, too. Clemson played its best game Saturday in a 27-13 victory over Georgia Tech, and now must prove itself road-worthy. Oh, and this Andre Ellington guy … 257 more all-purpose yards to add to his Spillerish numbers.

The vibe

Clemson, purposely or not, seems to have stumbled upon some better answers on defense. Malliciah Goodman and Jonathan Meeks, wedged into the starting lineup by injuries, excelled. Quarterback Kyle Parker was not stellar (17 of 27 for 167 yards) but had noticeably more zip on his passes, a good thing for a trip to Boston College.

South Carolina must whip Tennessee on Saturday and look good doing it -- without looking ahead to the Arkansas/ Florida portion of the schedule. Stephen Garcia at 31-of-39 passing is close to becoming an elite quarterback. Wideout Tori Gurley's best game wasn't surprising but came right on cue with Lattimore missing and a star spot open on the stat sheet.

Previous scores

Oct. 18: Clemson 24, USC 23

Oct. 11: USC 31, Clemson 17

Oct. 4: USC 24, Clemson 23

Sept. 27: Clemson 21, USC 20

Sept. 20: USC 20, Clemson 17

Sept. 13: USC 24, Clemson 13

Sept. 6: USC 27, Clemson 17

Aug. 30: USC 24, Clemson 17