South Carolina fans hoping to follow the Gamecocks to the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta will have to keep trucking west on I-20 to reach USC's bowl destination.
Barring any last-minute maneuvering - which occurred Tuesday when the Outback went with Auburn instead of Tennessee - the Gamecocks will face a Big East team in Birmingham in the Papajohns.com Bowl on Jan. 2.
An official announcement is not expected until Sunday, but the SEC's bowl lineup took shape Tuesday with reports that Auburn was headed to Tampa and the Chick-fil-A Bowl planned to take Tennessee.
"We don't know for sure how it's going to work out," USC coach Steve Spurrier said. "But if it is Birmingham, that's certainly fine with all of us."
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An official with the Independence Bowl, which picks ahead of the Papajohns.com, said the bowl is considering Georgia and USC. But most bowl insiders believe the Independence will go with Georgia, which has not played in the Shreveport, La., bowl since 1991.
The Gamecocks lost to Missouri 38-31 in the Independence in 2005 in Spurrier's first season.
Spurrier coached his final game with Duke at Legion Field, site of the Papajohns.com Bowl, in the 1989 All-American Bowl. Spurrier took his Florida team to Legion Field to face Alabama in the first two SEC championship games.
ESPN owns the Papajohns.com Bowl, which is in its fourth year. This will be the first time an SEC team has played in the game. The conference was affiliated with the Papajohns.com last year, but did not have enough teams qualify for a bowl.
The winner of Saturday's Connecticut-South Florida game could get the Big East's spot in Birmingham.