For the fourth consecutive year, the South Carolina Gamecocks will begin their football season with a Thursday night game in prime time. The Charlotte Sports Foundation announced on Wednesday that the 2015 season-opening neutral site contest between the Gamecocks and the North Carolina Tar Heels will be moved from Saturday, Sept. 5 to Thursday, Sept. 3.
Apparently preferring a stuffy corporate venue such as Bank of America Stadium to the pleasant scenery and lively atmosphere of a college campus, the athletics directors of UNC at USC have agreed that the game will be played in Charlotte instead of either Columbia or Chapel Hill. South Carolina played at UNC in 2007 and it seemed like the Tar Heels might never fulfill their end of the home-and-home until they finally came to Columbia to open the 2013 season. So I guess this does create a fun matchup between border rivals without requiring either side to commit to (and eventually back out of the visiting end of) a home-and-home.
Because the SEC has not yet released its conference schedule for 2015, we currently only know what the Gamecocks' 2015 out-of-conference schedule will look like. Here's what we've got so far:
|Thursday, Sept. 3||vs. North Carolina Tar Heels (Charlotte)|
|Saturday, Sept. 26||vs. Central Florida Knights|
|Saturday, Nov. 21||vs. The Citadel Bulldogs|
|Saturday, Nov. 28||vs. Clemson Tigers|
|Saturday, Dec. 5||SEC Championship Game|
The 2013 game is not quite as infamous, probably because South Carolina went on to have maybe its most successful season in program history. But it marked the beginning of the "Clowney is lazy" narrative that dominated the remainder of the season and even spilled over into coverage of the 2014 NFL Draft.
May the 2015 win be an unambiguous thrashing.