We're still a couple months away from the return of college football, but the anticipation is building across the country with spring practices in the books. There's plenty of optimism surrounding the South Carolina football team with Heisman candidate Spencer Rattler and head coach Shane Beamer leading the Gamecocks. Below, we continue our college football odds series with an over/under win total prediction for South Carolina.

Last season was chock-full of highs and lows in the second year under coach Shane Beamer.

Coach Beamer got his team back on track as the schedule softened up, as the Gamecocks destroyed Charlotte and SC State by a combined score of 106-30. South Carolina followed it up with back-to-back upset wins against Texas A&M and No. 13 Kentucky, culminating in the program's first four-game winning streak since 2013 and its first appearance in the AP Top 25 since 2018.

Beamer actually told his coaching staff before the upset win against the Aggies that he expected a game-altering play on special teams to make the difference for the Gamecocks. The game started with an electric kickoff return TD from Xavier Ligette.

The roller coaster ride of a season resumed with an ugly 23-10 loss against Missouri. The Gamecocks bounced back with a comfortable victory over Vanderbilt, before suffering an embarrassing 38-6 loss at Florida. Their low point came in the third quarter when the Gamecocks somehow fumbled the ball away in three of their first four snaps to start the second half.

Expectations were obviously brought down to earth as the program prepared for its final two tests of the season against No. 5 Tennessee and archrival No. 8 Clemson. The Gamecocks were massive 21.5-point underdogs against Tennessee, and they won by a whopping 25 points, as Clutch Points' Matthew Zemek predicted they'd treat the game as their Super Bowl.

Quarterback Spencer Rattler had been underwhelming for most of the season up to that point, averaging a meager 198 passing yards per game with eight touchdowns to nine interceptions. But Rattler shined under the national spotlight, throwing for a career-high 438 yards and six touchdowns against a top national title contender in Week 12.

South Carolina followed it up with another stunning upset win over double-digit favorite Clemson, ending the title chances of yet another College Football Playoff contender. The Gamecocks also ended the Tigers' 40-game winning streak at home.

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The Gamecocks came up short in a thrilling 45-38 loss to Notre Dame in a record-setting Gator Bowl, but without a doubt, they're carrying plenty of momentum and optimism into the 2023 season. But can they overcome some of the new obstacles and contend in the SEC East? Without further ado, let's take a look at South Carolina's over/under odds.

Here are the latest college football odds, courtesy of FanDuel

College Football Odds: South Carolina Over/Under Win Total

Over 6.5 Wins: +118

Under 6.5 Wins: -144

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Why South Carolina Could Hit The Under

South Carolina lost some of its most talented players to the 2023 NFL Draft, including second-round cornerback Cam Smith (Dolphins), third-round defensive tackle Zacch Pickens (Bears), fifth-round corner Darius Rush (Colts), and a pair of seventh-rounders in guard/center Jovaughn Gwyn (Falcons) and receiver Jalen Brooks (Cowboys).

The Gamecocks made our list of way-too-early college football playoff rankings heading into the summer, but four of their opponents also appear higher on the list, as they face a daunting schedule. In fact, only three of their opponents have a lower implied win total. this season and one of those three teams actually beat South Carolina last year.

Georgia, Clemson, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas A&M obviously present daunting challenges for South Carolina. Missouri, Mississippi State, and Kentucky also share the same implied win total as the Gamecocks.

Aside from the schedule and key departures through the draft, the biggest factors in breaking down South Carolina's win-total prediction is centered around whether the team can stay healthy and win in the trenches, particularly on defense.

Coach Shane Beamer has emphasized the defensive end position and its lack of depth throughout the offseason. Terrell Dawkins, Bryan Thomas, and Tyreek Johnson are among the defenders that will need to step up for the Gamecocks' defensive line.

Why South Carolina Could Hit The Over

As indicated above, there are several challenges this season that impact South Carolina's over/under pick. But after an in-depth review of the progress that the Gamecocks made in just the second season under Shane Beamer, it's difficult to envision the Gamecocks not producing a winning record for the third straight year.

South Carolina also assembled a strong recruiting class and had some nice pickups through the transfer portal, including projected starting right tackle Sidney Fugar and tight ends Trey Knox and Joshua Simon.

The Gamecocks need to get more out of their ground game but if Spencer Rattler continues to improve and performs anywhere near the way he did down the stretch last season, this team could be a legitimate contender for the second spot in the SEC East. South Carolina's over/under win total seems egregiously low.

Final South Carolina Over/Under Pick & Prediction

Remarkably tied for the 10th-best odds to win the SEC, South Carolina is well-equipped to handle the obstacles on its schedule and it's a seemingly safe bet to take the over on South Carolina's over/under prediction. As the season progresses, health, depth, and leadership will be key factors for South Carolina's over/under odds.

Final South Carolina Over/Under Pick & Prediction: Over 6.5 Wins: +118