Check out what the team had to say about the exciting match-up ahead during Wednesday’s open practice and some notables of the upcoming game.
-The 2013-14 Gamecocks will receive their SEC Championship rings and the banners for that title and the team's trip to the NCAA Sweet 16 will be unveiled prior to the game.
-South Carolina is looking for its 20th-straight win at Colonial Life Arena.
-With this week's ranking of No. 2, South Carolina has been in the AP top 10 for 13 straight weeks/polls. The Gamecocks ended the 2013-14 season ranked eighth and opened this season at No. 2. It matches the longest top-10 stretch for the program, originally set from Jan. 22, 1980 through Dec. 16, 1980.
-South Carolina has not allowed a team to shoot 50.0 percent from the field since Feb. 28, 2013, (Missouri). The highest field goal percentage defense last season was .459 by North Carolina in Myrtle Beach as one of just six games that saw an opponent reach the .400 mark.
-The addition of the SEC Network has allowed for 24 of the Gamecocks' 29 regular-season games to be broadcast nationally this season.
-The Tigers lead the overall series 33-26, but the Gamecocks have won the last four contest between the two.
Also adding to the excitement of the week, Staley announced Shay Colley (Brampton, Ontario) has signed a National Letter of Intenty to attend the University of South Carolina and play for the Gamecocks.
“We welcome Shay to our Gamecock family,” Staley said. “She has had an outstanding high school career along with her Canadian national team experience. She brings instant scoring to our team, but equally important is her defensive presence on the floor. Gamecock Nation will be very excited to see Shay hit the floor next season.”
Colle is a 5-foot-8 guard that has been a key component for Team Canada in international competition for the last two years, playing in the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championship, the 2013 FIBA U19 World Championship and the 2014 FIBA U18 Americas Championship.
She averaged 12.8 points, 3.0 assists and 4.8 rebounds over her five games in Colordo Springs, Colo. this past summer at the U18 event. Facing the USA team, Colley posted 18.5 points, 3.0 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game, including 21 points in the final game of pool play in a bid to upset the home team.
Colley led Canada to the bronze at the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championship at the age of 16. She also notched a pair of regional championships and a silver medal in the 2012 Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations championship.
She stands as the first signee for the 2015 class.
Fans planning on attending the game should be advised of road closures Thursday night. Vista Lights will affect traffic to and from the game, and the athletic department urges fans to plan to arrive early for the SEC Championship ring ceremony, which begins at 6:45 prior to the 7 p.m. game tip-off.
Road closures near the arena will be:
-Gervais from Huger to Assembly
-Lincoln rom Gervais to Senate
-Park from Gervais to Senate
Colonial Life Arena Surface Lot A and B and the Department of Transportation Garage will be open to the general public, as always.