Columbia, SC (WLTX) --- New USC athletics director Ray Tanner has made it no secret he wants to make former athletes feel more than welcome at their alma mater and his staff are making efforts to mend those fences with the past and present.

Monday afternoon at Seawell's saw nearly 50 former Gamecocks who played in the NFL gather for a luncheonorganized by the USC Athletics Department.

Rick Sanford, who played at USC from 1975-78, says this type of effort is "long overdue".

Both Sanford and Corey Miller are former Gamecocks who have talk shows on Sports Radio 560 The Team and the topic of relationships with former athletes and the school has been a hot-button issue for the two men.

However, with events like the one at Seawell's will go a long way towards making former players feel like they are welcome at their old stomping grounds.