South Carolina is almost certain to spend the bowl season in Florida.
While LSU appears to be the pick to end up in Orlando in the Citrus Bowl, it isn’t quite as clear where the Gamecocks will play.
South Carolina is likely headed to the Outback Bowl in Tampa or to the TaxSlayer Bowl in Jacksonville, college football insider Brett McMurphy told 107.5-FM radio host Heath Cline on Friday.
“Part of the people at South Carolina want to come to Tampa, and there’s another group involved at the school that wants to go to Jacksonville,” McMurphy said. “I’m told the faction that wants to come to Tampa will win that battle. We will have to see. It’s pretty much down to those two.”
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A trip to the Outback means a probable showdown with Michigan, McMurphy said, while the TaxSlayer Bowl would likely feature Virginia Tech as the opponent.
McMurphy is annually one of the top prognosticators in picking bowl matchups.
“I’m told Michigan (8-4) is pretty much a lock to play in Tampa for the first time since 2012. The Wolverines are expected to face South Carolina (8-4),” McMurphy wrote earlier this week in his bowl projections update.
The Gamecocks are 8-13 all-time in bowl games, including 3-1 in the Outback Bowl, which is played at noon Jan. 1 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla.
South Carolina played in the Outback Bowl twice under Lou Holtz, both victories over Ohio State. USC split a pair of games in Tampa under Steve Spurrier, including the 2013 win over Michigan that included Jadeveon Clowney’s famous played that was nicknamed “The Hit.”
The official bowl announcements are made Sunday afternoon.
Brett McMurphy’s SEC bowl projections
CFB Playoff: Auburn
Outback: South Carolina
Tax Slayer: Texas A&M
Music City: Kentucky