TAMPA, FL (WIS) - With Kurt Roper gone, South Carolina quarterback Jake Bentley now has a familiar face working with him to improve his game.
Jake's father and former USC running backs coach Bobby Bentley was given the charge of coaching the Gamecock quarterbacks after Roper was let go earlier this month. For Jake, having his dad help with his technique is something he gets to enjoy once again.
"I definitely see him," Gamecocks tight end Hayden Hurst said. "He's more relaxed. He's more comfortable. I think the biggest thing for him is just to kind of free him up because we put a lot of pressure on him. We expected a lot out of him, which he's fully capable of. But the more we can free Jake up and kind of ease his mind, I think the better he is."
Aside from receiving little tips here and there, Bentley hasn't been coached by his father on a field since he was a freshman in high school. However, things now have a familiar feel and that's something that could ultimately help Jake moving forward.
"A lot's gone on in the past three years, but it's cool to be back in the same position," Jake said.
Although Bentley has completed more than 62 percent of his passes, he's struggled to find consistency in the passing game throughout the year because of his footwork. With the help of the man who knows him better than anyone, the Gamecocks are hoping to see continued improvement from their young star.
"Jake has always been Jake," said Gamecocks wide receiver Bryan Edwards. "He just gets better with time. He was a young guy and you can just see him develop with time and he's just going to keep getting better.
Bentley and the Gamecocks will face Michigan in the Outback Bowl on New Year's Day at noon.