USC Men's Basketball

Colonial Life Arena getting new court, new court design

The Colonial Life Arena floor is set to be replaced.
The Colonial Life Arena floor is set to be replaced. tglantz@thestate.com

South Carolina will play on a new basketball floor next season.

“We just recently took coach (Dawn) Staley’s input, coach (Frank) Martin’s input and I shared a little bit,” athletic director Ray Tanner said on Thursday. “We have designed a new floor and we’re anticipating that we will have a new floor in place before the first game, hopefully even a little bit earlier.”

The new design, the third court layout for the 14-year-old building, will not feature the “bridge” logo – “South Carolina” stretching from 3-point line to 3-point line above the school’s Block C logo. Tanner confirmed the new floor will probably be just the Block C, plus a few smaller touches.

“I think a palmetto tree, “Gamecocks” in the end zone … it’s a good-looking floor, a very classy good-looking floor,” he said.

The building opened with the Gamecock logo in the center, with lanes painted garnet and melding into black. That changed to the “bridge” logo, with brown lanes.

The old court needed to be replaced, as it had been sanded several times and had a few dead spots on it. USC decided to order a new paint job along with the new wood.

Tanner also said that Williams-Brice Stadium will have a new banner facing Bluff Road, the location of a former banner of coach Steve Spurrier. He wouldn’t say what the new image would be, but he was hopeful it would be completed before the Sept. 17 home opener, along with the repaired Block C logo above it. The logo was recently damaged when it was struck by lightning.

“We’re working feverishly to get to that point,” Tanner said. “We’re trying to get there.”

USC’s $50 million football operations building is facing Phase II approval in September. If all goes well, Tanner estimated that ground could be broken at the end of the year, or the beginning of next year.

“We’re optimistic that it could happen,” he said. “There have been times where you don’t always get approval, or you could get a delay, you could be asked to bring back more information.”

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