Steve Spurrier not surprised by nationwide support for Marcus Lattimore
South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier said today that the outpouring of suppoort for injured Gamecock RB Marcus Lattimore doesn't surprise him because Lattimore is so humble and well-respected by teammates and opponents.
Lattimore, a native of South Carolina, dislocated his right knee and injured several ligaments when he was hit during this past Saturday's game against Tennessee. The gruesome scene shocked fans and players at the game, and was part of replay highlights throughout the rest of the day. He is expected to be able to play again, but his road to recovery will be long, Spurrier said.
By Saturday night, Twitter was filled with well-wishers from professional athletes to other college players. LSU's Sam Montgomery, also from South Carolina, has said he plans to wear Lattimore's No. 21 on his arm the remainder of the season. He's not alone.
"Justice Cunningham wore No. 21 in practice (Tuesday) afternoon.'' Spurrier said. "Marcus, again, we hope this is just something temporary for him. It's going to take some time to get back. But he will attack this, and doctors can do miracles nowadays putting knees back together. So we're hoping and praying that will occur here real soon."
Spurrier said Lattimore is truly deserving of all the support he's receiving.
"Marcus Lattimore is probably the most popular player to ever play here at South Caorlina,'' Spurrier said. "He's such a wonderful young man, well-respected, tremendously respected by all his opponents. Now usually in the game of football there's a little mouthing going on - you can't tackle me, you ain't that tough or something like that. But I've never seen anybody do any trash-talking with Marcus. And of course he never says anything, he just runs the ball as hard as he can every time he touches it.And he blocks, he does eerything coaches ask him to do. And I just think there's a mutual respect from all opponents as well as, of course, all his teammates for Marcus.""