Saturday, February 03, 2007

The 'Rock' is safe...

No not Rock Hill but Chimney Rock...

Gov. Mike Easley came to Chimney Rock Park to make it official — the state will buy the 996-acre property from the Morse family for $24 million.
The deal adds a key piece to what will become North Carolina’s 30th state park, Hickory Nut Gorge State Park. The state already has acquired 2,264 acres on the north and south sides of the rugged gorge.

In July 2006, the Morse family announced plans to put the park on the open market, with an asking price of $55 million. The Morses rejected a $20 million state offer last fall, but Easley and Todd Morse said both parties wanted to come to an agreement and keep the property preserved.

The state said an early appraisal gauged the park’s value at $21 million. The park lies in Rutherford County, where the Tax Office assessed the value of parcels owned by Chimney Rock Co. at $4.9 million, including the park’s buildings. That assessment was done in 2002, though, and gauging the park’s commercial value was almost impossible because of its unique nature.
The notion that the park will now be preserved forever sits well with the Chimney Rock community, which relies heavily on tourism and the natural beauty of the area.
The park draws 250,000 visitors a year.

The sale will close by the end of May.

Interesting facts:

• The 315-foot chimney and nearby sheer cliffs became a tourist attraction in 1885 when Jerome B. Freeman built a stairway to the chimney summit.
• The tower offers 75-mile views from an elevation of 2,280 feet. By comparison, Asheville’s elevation is 2,216 feet.
• Lucius B. Morse of Missouri fell in love with the gorge during visits here. He bought 64 acres in 1902 and began the park’s development.

Friday, February 02, 2007

You ready to rumble

Check out this Old school gamecock fight

USC Baseball picked to win...

South Carolina was picked to win the Southeastern Conference baseball title by league coaches while Arkansas was the choice for the Western Division title.

South Carolina returns six position starters and 10 pitchers from a team that advanced to the final game of Super Regional play last season.

The Gamecocks open the season Feb. 9 at the Hughes Brothers Challenge in Wilmington, N.C. against Oklahoma.

Also reported in The State was some news on the baseball stadium. Seems South Carolina baseball coach Ray Tanner still expects to open next season at the team’s new stadium, even though groundbreaking has been delayed until this summer.
The pre-construction phase of the project, estimated at $24 million, has taken longer than expected. Bids go out today for demolition of buildings on the property, the area at the intersection of Blossom and Williams street.
That means the construction of the yet-to-be-named stadium will not start until June or July, according to Tanner. But USC officials have maintained that once groundbreaking takes place, the stadium can be finished in time for the Gamecocks to play there in February of 2008.

Any thoughts?

Thursday, February 01, 2007

We must protect dis house...

Reported in The State today....South Carolina officials are in negotiations with Under Armour to make the Baltimore-based manufacturer the official apparel provider for many of the Gamecocks’ athletics teams.

USC’s deal with Russell was worth about $300,000 in the final year of the contract. Auburn’s five-year deal with Under Armour is believed to be worth about $2 million a year. The Gamecocks’ football program is at the end of a four-year deal with Russell to produce the team’s uniforms and is nearing the end of a two-year, shoe deal with Reebok. If USC chooses Under Armour, the Gamecocks would join Maryland, Auburn and Texas Tech as the only Division I-A programs wearing the company’s uniforms.

More money for USC and with that...what are ya'lls thought? Should they go with Under Armour or with Russell? What about Nike?

He deserved the money...

I must say he is doing pretty good for himself...Former University of South Carolina infielder Brian Roberts today agreed to a one-year, $4.2 million contract with the Baltimore Orioles, The Associated Press reported.

Any of you think he is the one of the best 2nd baseman in the league?

Let it snow...

A little snow in G-Vegas today!

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Next American Idol from Greenville?

First Clooney fever in G-Vegas now this....On last night's episode of "American Idol," Greenville's Chris Sligh appeared before the judges. He sang Seal's "Kiss From a Rose," which seemed to please the judges and got him a pass to Hollywood.

If you're a huge "AI" fan, you can find Sligh leading others in worship at Seacost Greenville Church, according to For more on Sligh, visit his band's myspace page at .

No Konate for you...

This was reported in The Greenville News.

Article states ---University of South Carolina reserve center Ousmane Konate has left the basketball team for personal reasons and is unlikely to play again, coach Dave Odom says.

"He will not be in uniform (Wednesday night against Auburn),'' Odom told reporters before practice Tuesday. "He's not likely to return to the team. The reason being is he's got some personal issues that he needs to attend to.''

Konate, a 6-foot-10, 270-pound junior from Senegal, has played in 25 games in his career -- 11 this year -- with no starts. This season Konate averaged 1.6 points and 2.0 rebounds a game.

I don't think this will hurt us and actually it was kinda assumed that he was done. Plus Odom had to create one scholarship for next year's class of recurits and transfers.

Any comments or anyone sad to see the Konate go?

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Tigers and Bears @ the super bowl

Rod Wilson Airese Currie

Best Class Ever?

Thanks to a LOHD reader. Here is a good 'read' on USC recruiting. The article says that "Spurrier has put together arguably the best recruiting class South Carolina has ever had."

It raises some good thoughts and is a must read for today.

Read More by clicking HERE or go to

Tears are flowing...

In the Upstate due to back to back losses from the beloved Clemson Tigers. I am not sure how many of you read The Greenville News but it has a deep love affair with Clemson University. After heartbreakin' losses in football at the hands of the Gamecocks then the Wildcats in the bowl, the CU fans just wanted to wash away the season and move on. They got their chance when the Clemson Men's Basketball team began play and when on to a 17-0 start (I know not much of a schedule those first 17 games) but then faced the much tougher games against ACC foes.

Clemson fans around 'dees parts' were all of a sudden huge basketball supporters and talking how they are now a basketball school. There was talk of ACC champs (again) and look out March Madness. BUT it seems that this "pipe dream" has faded. I will say that Clemson has a good team but to wish upon a star and say they will be ACC champs....nope! They are in the Top half of the ACC league and if they can close out this season well...a trip to the NCAA's.

I do find joy in the loss at DUKE. Purnell said it best..."We can't complain about the officiating, we should have never let it get to that situation in the first place!" I know there were clock issues but at the end of the day the record books show a "L." Move on......and the talk around the Upstate was how Duke cheated, look at the replay, officials missed the call, Tigers deserved to win....blah....blah. I say to those tiger fans....remember the "Push off" against Carolina that cold November night? Let it go!

Well on Sunday there was another heart breaker at CU. Clemson, leading by 14 points with just 4 minutes remaining, surrendered the final 15 points of the game to lose to the Cavaliers 64-63 on a putback by Jason Cain with 15.5 seconds left. And Clemson fans thought Thursday night's controversial loss at Duke was painful. Clemson failed to score a field goal over the final 8:47 and missed three crucial free throws. In the aftermath, it was difficult to tell who was more stunned -- fans in the crowd of 8,728 at Littlejohn Coliseum or the players themselves. Clemson's players strolled off the court in shocked silence.

I like-y.......

Monday, January 29, 2007

Gamecocks over the "Hump?"

What has gotten into these kids? Two wins in a row? A recent win over MSU at "The Hump" and earlier in the week a win over Ar-Kansas. The Gamecocks snapped a five-game losing streak and now are on a two game winning streak. This is the same team that lost consecutive games by....well let's just say a lot. South Carolina (12-7, 2-4 SEC) has a chance to get its season back on track.
Next up - USC hosts Auburn on Wednesday and is at Alabama on Saturday. Each team has a losing conference record and USC is 2-0 against the SEC West.

Are they trying to 'play' into getting a NIT bid again? Is a 3-peat on their minds? OR is this just a fluke and the team will return to lop-sided losses soon enough?

I am holding out hope that a "light switch" was turned ON with this team....what do you guys think?

The SC Recruiting Saga…

With 31 newcomers accounted for and just two uncommitted prospects still on the board, the weekend was quiet for USC.

There were no official visits and no new commitments.

USC awaits the decisions of tight end Wes Saunders (6-6, 270) of Durham, N.C. and linebacker Josh Bynes (6-3, 231) of Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.

Saunders’ decision is down to the Gamecocks and North Carolina. He said he plans to announce Feb. 5 at his team’s football banquet. He had an in-home visit from USC coach Steve Spurrier last week.

Iowa, Auburn and Louisville are also on Bynes’ list of finalists. Bynes plans to trim his list to two this week, but he said he might wait until signing day (Feb. 7) to make a final decision. USC coaches Robert Gillespie and Tyrone Nix met with him last week.
Twenty-two of the top 25 players in The State’s annual rankings of the top 50 senior football players have committed to play for schools in BCS conferences. J.C. Shurburtt, a national recruiting analyst for “The top 10 in South Carolina is comparable to the top 10 in any state in Southeast.”

In case you missed it there was a nice article in THE STATE paper this past weekend discussing recruiting and the job that Steve & Co has done over the years. The article focuses on the 2005 recruiting class that was Steve & Co’s first class. It reports who is still there and who has left for whatever reason. It actually is a nice read and one that gamecock fans should read.

More than a third of USC’s 28-player class of 2005 is no longer with the program, including some of the most highly touted prospects. Nine signees from Spurrier’s first class have left the team. A 10th, North Charleston lineman Jarriel King, failed to qualify and enrolled at Georgia Military.

It is interesting to read how the 2005 class shaped out and you can read more by clicking HERE.