Tori Richman

Column: Gamecocks should have Midnight Madness

Fresh off a phenomenal year for both the South Carolina men’s and women’s basketball teams, now is the time to start a new tradition.

USC should create a “Midnight Madness” and title it “Carolina Countdown.”

Midnight Madness is a night of basketball celebration that ends at midnight, and it is held by many colleges around the country. Some notable schools that participate include Maryland, Kansas, Michigan State, Kentucky and Duke. At most schools, the women’s basketball team comes out first, does a few drills and then does a scrimmage. The men’s team does the same. Some schools even have musical guests perform. Not only is this a hype night, but it is also a big night for recruiting.

The tradition started in 1971 when then University of Maryland head coach Charles “Lefty” Driesell had the Maryland team do a mile run at 12:03 a.m. on October 15, 1971. Back then, the NCAA would not allow teams to practice until the closest Friday to Oct. 15. Since then, the NCAA has become more flexible in allowing when these events take place. Kansas had its on Sept. 30.   

With both teams coming off appearances in the NCAA Final Four, there is no better time to start the tradition. USC may be dubbed a “football school,” but that does not mean the university cannot capitalize on the hype surrounding the upcoming basketball season and all of the seasons to come.  

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