CHARLESTON | As spectacular as Ryan Burger’s performance was, Adam Randall wasn’t about to pay off the bet from one moment in particular.
The two Myrtle Beach seniors carried the Seahawks to a season-opening 34-31 victory against Oceanside Collegiate at The Citadel on Friday night. Their numbers were unreal, and they both showed why they’ll be playing NCAA Division-I football this time next year.
In the midst of all that, they both also gave fans some new looks. Randall, the top-flight receiver committed to Clemson, took hold of the game late with his running abilities out of the program’s well-known Rhino package.
And Burger, who is committed to Appalachian State and threw for 335 yards and four touchdowns — mostly to Randall — also ripped off a 50-yard run in the second quarter, a scamper that was complete with a nasty spin move that left a defender grasping at air.
That brings us back to the wager.
“If he gets a 60-yard touchdown, I have to buy him Mr. Sub,” Randall said. “So I tried to throw him a block down field and was ‘Ah, I’m gonna have to buy him Mr. Sub.’ And then he gets tackled and I’m like ‘Dang.’”
Wasn’t half a football field and directly setting up a touchdown on the very next play good enough?
“Nah,” Randall said. “I need a score, too.”
While it didn’t happen on Burger’s career-long carry, there were plenty others to be had.
Randall hauled in a 43-yarder in the first quarter, a 58-yard bomb in the third and then the game winner, a 7-yard quick out in the corner of the end zone while he was on his knees, with under six minutes to go. Randall tacked on the two-point conversion to cap the scoring in the game, and his final three carries out of Rhino then ended the game when he earned the team a necessary first down to prevent Oceanside one last chance from tying or winning the contest.
In between, Burger also hit Antonio Brown with a 39-yard touchdown pass and Cam Ward got into the end zone on his own carry out of the heavy package.
But make no mistake, coach Mickey Wilson had every intention of relying on his two stars after his roster looked like Swiss cheese for most of the last month.
“Ryan Burger has gotten so much better over the last seven, eight months. He’s so much more polished in the pocket,” Wilson said. “Adam Randall, what can you say about that kid? He’s just so dynamic. He can score every time he touches the football. He can take it to the house. He had a lot of touches tonight. He got a little worn out. We were riding him pretty hard. We’ve got to have some other players step up and take the burden off him a little bit. But I’m really proud of both of those guys.”
Randall finished his last season opener in a Seahawk jersey with nine receptions for 205 yards and those three scores and another 80 yards rushing on eight carries.
Burger added his 66 rushing yards, more than two-thirds of his total from all of last season, to top 400 total yards of offense. Those added components were needed against the Landsharks, and they came when all eyes were on the two Myrtle Beach stars.
Maybe it proved that we haven’t seen their best just yet.
“It’s a big first step,” Burger said. “Obviously we didn’t want it to be this close. But we’re going to be battle-tested now. That’s going to be big the next few weeks.”
As for the free sub? Randall's going to make his quarterback earn it.