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Youth hinders the Bulls

South Carolina picked apart a young USF secondary in a thorough 34-3 beating in the Bulls' first real test of the season.

Facing the Gamecocks without 2003 starters J.R Reed, Kevin Verpaele and Ron Hemingway, proved too much for USF.

Platooning at left corner, Trae Williams and Mike Jenkins had a tough time filling Hemingway's role.

Jenkins, questionable before the game, got his first start of the season. Williams has limited experience at corner after he switched from running back over the summer.

Johnnie Jones, who replaced Verpaele at strong safety, left near the end of the first quarter with an injured shoulder. The senior almost redshirted this season after he sustained gunshot wounds in December.

Unfortunately for USF, South Carolina had an easier time replacing starting quarterback Dondrial Pinkins

Led by receiver Troy Williamson, the Gamecocks had their way with the Bulls secondary.

Second-string quarterback Syvelle Newton threw three touchdowns, each over 50 yards, to Williamson. USF only gave up two passes over 50 yards all season in 2003.

Williamson's three touchdowns are the most any receiver has had against USF.

With Newton getting his first-ever start, USF looked to take advantage. But it didn't take long for Newton to exploit USF's secondary.

The Newton-to-Williamson connection proved costly for the Bulls. Williamson capped a career game when he outran the USF defense on a 73-yard touchdown reception in the fourth.

On the game's first drive, Newton connected with Williamson on a 56-yard touchdown pass. Cornerback Williams, in his first start for the Bulls, was badly outdistanced on the play.

In the second quarter, Williamson struck again, beating D'Juan Brown on a 55-yard touchdown pass from Newton.

Newton finished with 324 yards passing, which were the most in a Gamecocks debut in more than 30 years.