Thousands welcome SEC East champs home - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Thousands welcome SEC East champs home

Fans, young and old, welcomed the Gamecocks home Fans, young and old, welcomed the Gamecocks home
Steve Spurrier addresses the crowd Steve Spurrier addresses the crowd
Marcus Lattimore salutes the crowd (Source: USC Athletics) Marcus Lattimore salutes the crowd (Source: USC Athletics)
Fans welcome the SEC East champs back to Columbia (Source: USC Athletics) Fans welcome the SEC East champs back to Columbia (Source: USC Athletics)
Fans welcome the SEC East champs back to Columbia (Source: USC Athletics) Fans welcome the SEC East champs back to Columbia (Source: USC Athletics)

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Despite bitter cold temperatures and the team's return being in the wee hours of the morning, thousands of fans welcomed their beloved Gamecocks back to Columbia Sunday.

Fans started filing into Williams-Brice Stadium around 1:00 a.m. after watching USC put a whipping on Florida Saturday night to win the SEC East crown.

Around 2:00 a.m., the team bus pulled up to the stadium.  As they entered the stadium, players and coaches high-fived fans as fans cheered while the scoreboard at Williams-Brice read: Gamecocks 36, Florida 14.   

Just hours after the huge win on his old stomping grounds, Coach Spurrier addressed the sea of garnet and black Gamecock fans.

"As we were leaving Gainesville tonight, one of my Florida buddies called me up and said 'Coach, you guys sort of over celebrate winning the division don't ya?' I said, we haven't won a football championship in over 41 years, we're going to celebrate tonight!," said Spurrier.

"It was a great team victory down there. We had 7,500 Gamecocks. We sold all of our tickets and they were the only ones left in the stadium. That was sort of neat," said Spurrier.

Captain Cliff Matthews said, "We just want thank y'all for being the best fans in the world! We still gotta lot of work to do!"

The Gamecocks will play Auburn in Atlanta on December 4th for the SEC championship. Tickets are sold out to the general public.  The University of South Carolina will receive 15,900 tickets.  For more information on how to apply for tickets, click here. Requests must be received by Monday, November 15.

Related stories:

Gamecocks make another climb in the polls

Gamecocks win first ever SEC division title

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