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Inside SEC Media Day with the Gamecocks

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With 44 days until South Carolina opens up the 2012 season at Vanderbilt, four Gamecocks headed to the Wynfrey Hotel in Alabama for the annual unofficial kickoff to the season - SEC Media Days. This year Carolina was represented by head coach Steve Spurrier along with receiver Ace Sanders, quarterback Connor Shaw, and safety D.J. Swearinger.

As Spurrier termed this time of year "talking season", he said he chooses student-athletes to come who he considers good representatives of the program as well as those who handle the media well. He happily said there were dozens of players he could have chosen this season who fit that criteria. Spurrier referenced the heightened expectations at Carolina throughout the day, saying he still hopes to compete and bring home the Gamecocks' first SEC Championship.

The group spent time at dozens of stations around the hotel, including different TV networks such as ESPN and CBS, print media, TV news, radio, and internet. The SEC staff has the day down to a well-tuned machine, with players and coaches seamlessly flowing from station to station right on schedule.

Look back through our coverage throughout the day with @GamecockFB and @SpursUpBlog on Twitter!

Check out our photo slideshow including some behind the scenes looks below:

2012 season tickets are available now! Click here for more information.


SEC Reigns Supreme With Another National Title

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Info courtesy of Charles Bloom, Associate Commissioner - Media & Public Relations for the Southeastern Conference.

One of the things we talk about a lot in athletics is the strength of your conference and the benefits we see at South Carolina because of our membership in the Southeastern Conference. Check out some of these stats below from the SEC office about the league's competitiveness at the highest level - national championships - following Kentucky winning the Men's Basketball title last night. The Gamecocks have contributed to the cause with three titles in SEC-sponsored sports: women's outdoor track & field (2002) and baseball (2010, 2011).

sec.jpgWith Kentucky winning the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship...

* - So far in 2011-12, the SEC has three national champions - Alabama (football), Florida (men's indoor track and field) and Kentucky (men's basketball).   An SEC team is currently ranked in the top three in the latest national polls in all of its remaining sponsored sports for the year - gymnastics, men's and women's golf, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's outdoor track and field, softball and baseball.

* - In its history, the SEC has won 190 national championships, 113 men's and 77 women's titles.  Since 2000, the SEC has won 74 national crowns, including 41 men's titles and 33 women's titles.

* - The SEC is currently the reigning national champions in the "big three" men's sports - Football (Alabama), Men's Basketball (Kentucky) and Baseball (South Carolina).  In those sports, the SEC has won 11 national championships during the last six academic years.

* - Since 2006, the SEC has had a national champion in 10 of its 20 sponsored sports - football, men's basketball, baseball, men's indoor track and field, women's swimming and diving, gymnastics, women's tennis, men's tennis, men's swimming and diving and women's basketball.

* - Eight of the 12 SEC schools have won national championships in the 20 SEC-sponsored sports since Fall 2006.  They include:  Alabama (football, gymnastics), Auburn (football, men's swimming and diving, women's swimming and diving), Florida (men's indoor track, women's tennis, women's swimming and diving, football, men's basketball), Georgia (gymnastics, men's tennis), Kentucky (men's basketball), LSU (baseball, football, women's outdoor track and field), South Carolina (baseball), Tennessee (women's basketball, women's indoor track  and field)

* - The SEC has now won 11 NCAA men's basketball tournament titles with Kentucky claiming eight (1948, 1949, 1951, 1958, 1978, 1996 and 1998).  Florida has two (2006, 2007) and Arkansas has one (1994).

* - Since 1993, the SEC has won six men's basketball national championships - Arkansas (1994), Kentucky (1996), Kentucky (1998), Florida (2006), Florida (2007) and Kentucky (2012).  Only the ACC (6) has won as many men's basketball titles during this time.

* - The SEC has won 29 national championships during the last six academic years, an average of almost five per year.