USC Earns First Ticket to March Madness in 13 Years

For the first time since 2004, the USC men's basketball team is in the NCAA Tournament. Carolina will play Marquette Friday in Greenville.

Columbia, SC (WLTX) - The South Carolina Gamecocks have secured a bid in the men's NCAA Tournament, their first such bid in college basketball's postseason in 13 years.

The Gamecocks, who earned a seven-seed, learned during Sunday's selection show that they will play Marquette on Friday.  And they don't have to travel far: they'll be in Greenville, right in the Upstate.

The game will start at roughly 9:50 p.m. Friday night (after the conclusion of the previous game), and will be broadcast on TBS. 

If they win, they'd likely face Duke in the next round. The Blue Devils have a first round matchup against Troy. 

USC (22-10) is hoping to do something no Gamecocks men's basketball team has done in 44 years: win an NCAA Tournament game. That came way back in the Frank McGuire era. 

While USC has had success in the postseason since then, including two NIT title's they've been unable to advance past the first round of the so-called "Big Dance." 

In fact, the last time the Gamecocks made the tourney field was back in 2004, when then coach Dave Odom led the team into the playoff. However, USC lost that game to Memphis. 

The Gamecocks will hope to break the streak with the help of Sindarious Thornwell had a first of his own recently. Thornwell became the first USC men's basketball player ever to be named SEC Player of the year. He leads the team with 21 points a game and 7.2 rebounds per contest. 



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