COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Kentucky committed five critical turnovers and South Carolina quarterback Blake Mitchell took advantage, throwing for two touchdowns and running for a third as coach Steve Spurrier earned his first Southeastern Conference victory at South Carolina at the expense of the Wildcats. The Gamecocks won the game 44-16. Spurrier improved to 13-0 against the Wildcats (1-4, 0-2 SEC).
South Carolina took control of a tie game in the second half. South Carolina's effort was largely helped by a series of Kentucky turnovers. Little fumbled two plays into one Kentucky series. When the Wildcats got the ball back, Little fumbled again, this time with safety Ko Simpson grabbing the loose ball and returning it 19 yards for a touchdown and a 30-16 lead. On Kentucky's very next play, fullback Arliss Beach was stripped of the ball and Stoney Woodson picked it up for South Carolina.
Simpson added a fourth-quarter interception that set up Daccus Turman's 1-yard touchdown run. And backup quarterback Syvelle Newton ran in a 16-yard score in the final minutes.
Mitchell finished 23-of-34 for 277 yards. Rice, who also had a 27-yard touchdown catch, tied the school mark set by Jermale Kelly in 1997 with TD receptions in five straight games.
Little, a sophomore, gained a career-high 120 yards for Kentucky. Quarterback Andre Woodson went 11-17 passing for just 90 yards, no touchdowns and one interception. He was sacked four times.