Eric Douglas didn’t have the season he expected. Nor did he see what it would mean for his future.

If there was a game that defined South Carolina’s disappointing 4-8 season last year, it was the season-opening 24-20 loss to North Carolina. The Gamecocks had a 20-9 lead with 15 minutes to play and blew it.

Douglas started at right guard that game, the first start of his career, and suffered a high ankle sprain. He would return to play in eight games the rest of the season, but never started again.

“The guys look at me in the locker room as a happy, jovial guy. I was trying to keep everyone happy while I couldn’t play,” he said. “From guys like Donell, (NFL players Dennis Daley and Zack Bailey), they showed us how to play offensive line.”

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