In the end, it was the Gamecocks (4-3, 3-3 SEC) who came out on top-in come-from-behind fashion in a 27-24 win over the Vols (3-5, 1-5 SEC) at Williams-Brice Stadium.
With the win, South Carolina has now won three-straight over Tennessee, and Will Muschamp is 7-0 all-time against the Vols dating, back to his 4-year stint at Florida.
The Tennessee offense struck early, scoring their first, first quarter touchdown of the season with a 5-yard touchdown toss from Jarrett Guarantano to Eli Wolf to cap off a 6-play, 39-yard drive.
The Vols extended their lead to 14-3 with a Guarantano pass to Jauan Jennings with just over two minutes left in the second quarter, but Jake Bentley answered with a touchdown pass to Deebo Samuel to cut the deficit to 14-9 just before the half.
Early in the third quarter, a 14-yard touchdown run from Carlin Fils-aime gave Tennessee a 21-9, and it appeared that the Vols offense was clicking on all cylinders for the first time this season in an SEC game.
However, Tennessee could only muster a field goal for the rest of the second half as South Carolina scored a pair of third quarter touchdowns on Rico Dowdle and Ty’Son Williams runs. Bentley was able to punch it on a two-point conversion to tie the game, 24-24.
The difference in the game proved to be 25-yard field goal from Parker White with 5:52 left in the game as the Gamecocks defense sacked Guarantano on a 4th and long with just over a minute on the clock.
Tennessee posted 351 yards of total offense while South Carolina managed to put up 376 yards.
As far as the quarterbacks were concerned, Guarantano finished the game 27-39 for 207 yards and 2 touchdowns for the Vols as Jake Bentley went 11-16 for 152 yards, 1 touchdown and 1 interception.
For Tennessee, bowl eligibility is still a possibility, but the Vols still have contests with Missouri, Kentucky, Charlotte and Vanderbilt on the horizon. South Carolina’s chances of making a third-straight bowl appearance improved drastically with the win, but the Gamecocks still have games at Ole Miss, at Florida, Chattanooga and at Clemson left.