Clemson-South Carolina rivalry game cancelled after SEC moves to conference-only games

  • By cvbizz
  • July 30, 2020
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(FOX Carolina) – With the SEC’s decision to move to only conference football games for the fall 2020 season, the in-state rivalry game between the Clemson Tigers and the South Carolina Gamecocks is effectively canceled, breaking a 111-year streak in college football rivalries.

While the Atlantic Coast Conference said universities could schedule one in-state non-conference game on Wednesday, the Southeastern Conference’s decision effectively dashes the in-state rivalry between the Tigers and the Gamecocks.

“This new plan for a football schedule is consistent with the educational goals of our universities to allow for the safe and orderly return to campus of their student populations and to provide a healthy learning environment during these unique circumstances presented by the COVID-19 virus,” SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said in a Thursday afternoon announcement. “This new schedule supports the safety measures that are being taken by each of our institutions to ensure the health of our campus communities.”

<a href=”;utm_medium=twitter” target=”_blank”> reports</a> this move breaks a rivalry that has seen both teams throw down on the turf every season since 1909. But the Gamecocks and Tigers aren’t the only teams losing their rivalries amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. TigerNet notes the Louisville-Kentucky, Florida-Florida State, and Georgia-Georgia Tech rivalries are now effectively called off.

Clemson can still decide on another non-conference game to play this season under the ACC’s allotment.

Gamecocks head coach Will Muschamp said “It’s unfortunate that we will not be playing Clemson this season but that wasn’t our choice, it was a league decision. That’s a game that is important to our program, our institution and our state, and one that President Caslen and Coach Tanner pushed hard to make happen. I look forward to renewing the rivalry in 2021.”

Meanwhile, Clemson athletics director Dan Radakovich also responded, saying “Clemson aggressively lobbied the ACC to include an additional non-conference game for the primary purpose of maintaining our long-standing rivalry game with South Carolina. We’re disappointed to hear of the scheduling decision announced by the SEC, as we know the importance of The Palmetto Bowl to the State of South Carolina. We will work to fill the opening on our schedule immediately.”

South Carolina says they will still have fans at Williams-Brice Stadium, albeit at reduced capacity. Social distancing must be enforced for the the stadium to allow more than 250 people for home games.

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