First and last year as starter, Dylan Thompson soaks it in - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

First and last year as starter, Dylan Thompson soaks it in

Dylan Thompson addressed the media at SEC Media Days. Dylan Thompson addressed the media at SEC Media Days.
HOOVER, AL (WIS) -

He didn't arrive to SEC Media Days with the same amount of pomp, circumstance, and fawning as maybe Johnny Manziel a year ago, but nonetheless, Gamecocks quarterback Dylan Thompson made his first and last appearance in Hoover on Tuesday.

"There's a lot of guys and very few girls right now. It's football time," Thompson joked. "Nah, I'm just kidding. It's been fun to just get to hang out, meet new people, and talk football. It kinda gets you in the mood a little bit for the season and I'm just really looking forward to this year and what we have to offer."

Thompson enters the 2014 college football season as the clear starter in Steve Spurrier's system after several seasons playing second fiddle to Connor Shaw.

However, Thompson played several meaningful games as the backup, even beating Clemson in 2012.

But with Thompson as the guy this year, coach Steve Spurrier's main concern is keeping the fifth-year starter healthy.

"We really believe he's a very good player, has a chance to lead us to a big season. Has a chance," said Spurrier.

A chance is all Thompson may need. He says he's been excited and focused since the spring game.

"I'm so ready to play. I'm just looking forward to the year," said Thompson.

That infectious optimism has translated well to leadership for Thompson. Fellow senior AJ Cann had nothing but great things to say about his starter.

"Dylan's more of a vocal guy," said Cann. "He wants the team to know that he's there for them and he's leading, telling them this, telling them that."

Thompson's first start of the season starts Aug. 28 against Texas A&M on the SEC Network.

Copyright 2014 WIS. All rights reserved.

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