Wedding planners beware. The calls will be pouring in soon.
The Southeastern Conference on Thursday afternoon released its conference schedule, meaning college football-mad Columbia can begin planning its fall weekends around the Gamecocks 2013 plans. The conference had planned to complete a new scheduling model for next year, perhaps dramatically altering the look of South Carolinas season, but instead offered up a bridge schedule Thursday.
As we began working on the 2013 football schedule, it became apparent that the conference would need another year of the bridge schedule to make everything work, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said in a statement released by the conference. I appreciate the SEC transition team and our athletics directors, who came together to put this schedule in place. We look forward to starting with our new scheduling rotation in 2014.
South Carolina will play at Georgia on Sept. 7, Vanderbilt on Sept. 14, Kentucky on Oct. 5, at Arkansas on Oct. 12, at Tennessee on Oct. 19, at Missouri on Oct. 26, Mississippi State on Nov. 2 and Florida on Nov. 16.
The team already had announced it was set to play North Carolina at home on Aug. 31, Central Florida on the road on Sept. 28, Coastal Carolina at home Nov. 23 and Clemson at home on Nov. 30. The school did not finalize its out-of-conference games in announcing Thursdays conference slate.
The schedule was complicated by this years addition of Texas A&M and Missouri to the SEC. The Aggies and Tigers were penciled hurriedly in to this years slate, but the league said it would hash out a new model in time for 2013. The new model would have replaced Arkansas as a regular feature on South Carolinas schedule with Texas A&M, but that change, like the rest of the new format, has been pushed back to 2014, the conference announced in its release.
The Gamecocks and Razorbacks were established as permanent opponents when both joined the conference together in 1992, but the game never became the rivalry the SEC had hoped. Arkansas has won 13 of the 20 games played, including five of the last six. The teams play this season on Nov. 10 in Williams-Brice Stadium.
FULL SCHEDULE FOR 2013
Aug. 31 NORTH CAROLINA
September 7 at Georgia
September 14 VANDERBILT
Sept. 28 at Central Florida
October 5 KENTUCKY
October 12 at Arkansas
October 19 at Tennessee
October 26 at Missouri
November 2 MISSISSIPPI STATE
November 16 FLORIDA
November 23 COASTAL CAROLINA
Nov. 30 CLEMSON