Joe Morrison provided the black. The Gamecocks provided the magic.
It was the 1984 football season. It was the second season at the helm for Morrison, who often wore all-black attire on the sideline. He had posted a 5-6 record that first year, but this one would be different.
Thanks to a series of remarkable comebacks that would lead to the season’s Black Magic nickname, South Carolina started 9-0 and reached what remains the highest national ranking in school history at No. 2. The Gamecocks beat Georgia, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame and Florida State during their run.
“The hoopla, the frenzy that was going on was sick,” said Mike Hold, who shared time with Allen Mitchell at quarterback for that team. “I still get chill bumps when I think about it.”
South Carolina’s perfect season ended with a 38-21 loss to Navy, and the Gamecocks finished the year 10-2.