SOUTH CAROLINA MOVES SATURDAY’S FOOTBALL GAME TO BATON ROUGE
Citing an unwillingness to tie up first responders dealing with the aftermath of “Floodmaggedon,” the University of South Carolina has moved this weekend’s football game against No. 7 Louisiana State University to Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
The news comes less than 48 hours after officials assured fans the game would be played as scheduled in Columbia, S.C.
“We made the extremely difficult decision to cancel classes for the week due to the stress 34,000 students would place on the region’s recovering infrastructure, there is no doubt 85,000 fans would exact the same toll,” University of South Carolina president Harris Pastides said in a statement. “In the spirit of supporting our South Carolina community that is so supportive of Gamecock Nation, we have decided to move the game to Baton Rouge.”
The real reasons behind USC’s decision to move the game? The city of Columbia, S.C. – where the school’s home stadium is located – is still dealing with contaminated water in the aftermath of the storm as well as a major breach of a canal near its largest wastewater treatment facility.
“Moving the game is best,” Gamecock head coach Steve Spurrier told local television station WIS TV 10 (NBC – Columbia, S.C.). “The governor, our president, law enforcement, they all think this is the right thing to do. We’re just not ready for a ball game Saturday afternoon.”
That’s for sure …
No matter what the reason for this geographic relocation, the outcome of this game has never really been in question …
LSU and its Heisman Trophy running back Leonard Fournette are expected to run all over the Gamecocks … no matter where they play. The Tigers (4-0, 2-0 SEC) were a 13.5-point favorite over the Gamecocks (2-3, 0-3 SEC) as the road team – a spread that’s expected to widen now that they will be playing in front of their own fans.
UPDATE: According to the The New Orleans Advocate, “it’s expected that South Carolina will keep the ticket revenue and reimburse LSU for its expenses to conduct the game.”