South Carolina takes on their second BCS out of conference foe this weekend. The Gamecocks travel to Orlando to face Central Florida. After a high profile, Thursday night opener against North Carolina and a Top 15 match up with Georgia, a game against an AAC opponent isn't going to draw much national interest. The game will be televised nationally on ABC, but unless UCF pulls the upset the game won't make many national waves.
Coming into the season, South Carolina was ranked in the Top 10 and had aspirations of winning the East, the SEC and maybe more. Those hopes took a hit in Athens a few weeks ago, but they're not off the board. The biggest change is that Carolina is not quite at the top of the minds of many college football fans. USC doesn't have a nationally interesting game for a while either.
For the next 6 weeks the Gamecocks will play a similar game, over and over. They will play against a team who they will be favored to beat. Other than Kentucky the spreads will probably be 5-15 points in USC's favor. The teams Carolina will be playing will be capable of beating the Gamecocks, but if Carolina plays well upsets aren't likely.
The games will all be televised to large, usually national, audiences. But there'll not be a lot of national buzz around most of the games. That's fine. Less attention means less hype. Hype brings two dangers. There is the pressure to live up to they hype, and there is the danger of believing the hype. For the next 6 weeks those concerns should be minimized.
Carolina should win their next six games. If they do, it will be relatively quiet. The second off week will come in November, and USC will be 8-1. They'll be ranked somewhere in the Top 10, and perhaps the Top 5. Everyone will take notice when they play Florida. Depending on what the Bulldogs do, the game could be for the East, and half of the season below the radar may be a blessing to the team.