South Carolina recognized longtime baseball fan Bill Golding, known for his “Oot Oot!” cheer, as part of its Opening Day festivities on Friday.
Golding died a week earlier at the age of 84.
A limited number of baseball hard hats were given to fans at Founders Park to recognize the decorated hard hat Golding always wore. The players also wore a black helmet sticker with “Oot-Oot” on it, and a flag bearing the catchphrase flew in the outfield.
After a moment of silence, fans joined in for a boisterous “Oot Oot!” to remember Golding.
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“It will definitely be different without Bill,” USC head coach Chad Holbrook told The State after Golding’s death. “He was such a loyal fan. It was always good to know he was in our corner. He loved his baseball players, he loved our baseball program. It’s a big loss for us. We’re going to miss him dearly.”
Golding, from Elgin, attended his first South Carolina football game in 1984. It was his presence at baseball games for more than 30 years that garnered a following of generations of Gamecocks fans.
Golding was a fixture at Sarge Frye Field and later at Founders Park, rarely sitting down and often mingling with fans throughout games. His outgoing personality made him part of the ballpark experience.
He also was a regular at road games, including the SEC tournament in Hoover, Ala.