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Wild story as a grad assistant coach - yes, coach - will be South Carolina's starting QB Saturday

Well this is one you don't hear often, but South Carolina will start one of its grad assistant coaches at quarterback on Saturday.

Yes, you read that correctly. A grad assistant.

The news was first reported by ESPN's Chris Low, but here is the backstory on it all.

The player's name is Zeb Noland (great name, by the way), and after playing four years at Iowa State and North Dakota State, decided to come to South Carolina as a grad assistant.

Just one problem, projected starter Luke Doty got hurt in practice a while back. And while there's a realistic chance that Doty could be back as early as next week, he was not available for the Gamecocks opener on Saturday against East Carolina.

So when he went down, Noland - who by technicality had an extra year of eligibility because of Covid - started practicing with the team. And on Tuesday according to Low, he officially got the nod over another FCS transfer named Jason Brown.

The story is legitimately wild, but, Noland does in fact have some experience in high level games.

He actually began his career at Iowa State before transferring to North Dakota State. And when the FCS decided to push back its season from the fall to spring last year, it was Noland who stepped into the starting spot in place of some guy named Trey Lance, who declared for the draft and bypassed the spring season. Noland ended up throwing for over 700 yards with five touchdowns and six interceptions in the fall.

He isn't a great option, but the best option new head coach Shane Beamer has.

In what is undoubtedly one of the wildest stories we've seen in a long time.


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