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Gamecocks to face Cornell in first round of Charleston Classic

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South Carolina draws the easiest first round opponent available in the Charleston Classic, the lowly Cornell Big Red of the Ivy League.

Frank Martin and the Gamecocks draw an easy first-round opponent in the Charleston Classic.
Frank Martin and the Gamecocks draw an easy first-round opponent in the Charleston Classic.
Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

The Charleston Classic announced its bracket on Tuesday afternoon, and the Gamecocks received great news - they're likely to get two good games in Charleston after their first-round match-up with the Cornell Big Red.

Many may remember Cornell from the 2010 NCAA Tournament, where they ran to the Sweet 16 with wins over Temple and Wisconsin before bowing out to Kentucky.  This is not that Cornell team.  After that year, coach Steve Donahue (along with seven seniors) departed, Bill Courtney took over, and the team quickly fell to irrelevance, bottoming out last season with a 2-26 record (1-13 in the Ivy).

Perhaps fortunately for Cornell, they return four starters from that squad, though one wonders if returning a team that played so poorly represents a good thing or not.

If the Gamecocks grab their likely first round victory, they'll progress to most likely face Penn State, who faces Charlotte in the first round.  Their final game most likely comes against Southern Cal or Miami (though perhaps Akron), both of which would give the Gamecocks a relatively marquee name opponent, if not a particularly strong one - though each team should be decent next season, neither is likely to make the NCAA Tournament.

With the announcement of the bracket, only one game remains a mystery for the 2014-15 Gamecocks.  Since multi-team exempt tournaments like the Charleston Classic allow four games for each team, usually each school plays one additional game against a team from the bracket, much as the Gamecocks played Akron last season.  Given the ways these things normally work, expect South Carolina to host someone from the other side of the bracket that's not likely to host a game themselves - either Drexel or Akron.

The full bracket is below, and the entire Gamecock schedule (along with our analysis) is here: