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Road to the Gator Bowl: 'Diehard Gamecock' USC nutrition staff member surprised by trip to Jacksonville with the team

Anita Oneal has worked with the USC Athletics nutrition department to provide meals for the football players. Soon, she'll head to the Gator Bowl.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — One week from today, the University of South Carolina Gamecocks will play in the Gator Bowl. While the team prepares to face Notre Dame in Jacksonville, a special fan is getting ready to join them.

"I’m going to the bowl game!" Anita Oneal exclaimed.

That’s the exciting news that she received as a birthday surprise.

"That was exciting! That was a blessing. Overjoyed!" she said about how she's feeling.

Anita tells me she’s been a "diehard Gamecock" her entire life. For the past four years, she’s gotten the chance to work with the USC football players through the nutrition department by helping pass out meals.

"I know 'em all by name, I love 'em all. I interact with them everyday. I love that," Anita says about the players. "I tell them all the time I be screaming their names. I know their names and I know their numbers."

They affectionately call her "Ms. Anita" and on Christmas day, she’ll be joining the team as they head to the Gator Bowl.

"I’m excited for everything down there. I’ve never been to Florida. They say it’s going to be a lot of fun and I definitely can't wait for the game," Anita shared. "Imma be making pancakes and waffles and imma be enjoying too."

While the team prepares to go up against the Fighting Irish, Anita says she’s the one feeling lucky.

"I know they’re gonna win! I know they are," Anita told me. "I feel it in my bones. I know they are."

WLTX will also be heading to Jacksonville to provide coverage and live reports of the events leading up to the Gator Bowl, as well as the Bowl game itself.

On Thursday, we’ll have a Live special report at 7:30 p.m. on the Gamecocks road to the Gator Bowl.

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