Freshman quarterback Ryan Hilinski is expected to start for the South Carolina Gamecocks Saturday afternoon against Charleston Southern with senior quarterback Jake Bentley out with a broken foot.

GamecockCentral.com reported that Bentley was in a walking boot on Monday after suffering an injury in the loss to North Carolina. 

That means the most high profile quarterback signee in the Will Muschamp era will make his debut in what will be his first start. 

“Ryan is extremely bright, extremely intelligent," head coach Will Muschamp said during his Sunday teleconference. 

"He works hard at it, as far as the film work and different things are concerned, so he is – nothing’s changed, as far as his preparation. He’s prepared himself the right way the entire time, so I’ve been very pleased with that."

The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Hilinski beat out redshirt freshman Dakereon Joyner for the backup quarterback job during a competition that lasted all offseason. With Bentley's injury, Hilinski moves into the starting role with Joyner sliding into the No. 2 QB role.

Hilinski joined the South Carolina football program in January as one of the most highly rated quarterback signees in school history.

An All-American Bowl quarterback, Hilinski was ranked the No. 45 overall prospect and the No. 3 pro-style quarterback in the 2019 class by Rivals.com.

A standout at Lutheran High in Orange, Calif., completed 222 of 346 passes for 2,771 yards and 29 touchdowns. as a senior.

Hilinski signed with the Gamecocks over offers from 31 other programs.

Saturday's home opener kicks off at noon at Williams-Brice Stadium on the SEC Network.