Last year, the student section at South Carolina’s football games started to get a reputation. A bad one. In the home opener against East Carolina, the student section was nearly empty midway through the third quarter.
With the 2013-2014 sports seasons right around the corner, South Carolina will be looking to capture conference and national championships. Here are eight athletes to watch as the Gamecocks battle for titles.
South Carolina will need contributions from household names like Jadeveon Clowney, Connor Shaw and Dylan Thompson, but here are eight players keep an eye on as USC tries to capture the conference title.
Shelley Smith is used to winning, not rebuilding. As a high school athlete at Mount Anthony Union High School in Vermont, Smith captured state titles in soccer, basketball and softball.
A winning season for a team that had just one winning record in the past decade would probably make most coaches happy. A winning season for a team that competes in a conference that sent five teams to the NCAA tournament last year would probably make even more coaches happy.
Chad Holbrook’s first season as head baseball coach at the University of South Carolina ended at the same school where his coaching career began. The Gamecocks fell in the Chapel Hill Super Regional against the North Carolina Tar Heels, Holbrook’s alma mater and the school where he coached for fifteen seasons before coming to Columbia.
On the heels of back-to-back 11-win seasons, the Gamecocks are continuing to build for the future. USC has 12 hard commitments for the class of 2014 and head coach Steve Spurrier’s staff will likely add to that haul as the high school football season gets under way.
When Ray Tanner left the baseball diamond to take over the South Carolina athletics program in August of 2012, USC’s athletic teams were experiencing one their the most successful streaks in school history. Now, with a year as athletic director under his belt and the Gamecock athletic programs continuing to excel, it’s understandable why Tanner feels like he’s landed the ideal coaching job.
From start to finish, it took approximately 3.5 seconds. From the moment the ball was snapped off the grass of Raymond James Stadium until the moment that a member of the Big East officiating crew assigned to the 2013 Outback Bowl blew his whistle, Jadeveon Clowney was one of college football’s best players. Once the whistle blew, he was a rockstar.
Fans hoping to see the 2013 Gamecock football team will finally get their chance, starting this week. South Carolina will open fall camp Friday evening as the Gamecocks search for their third consecutive 11-win season.