Petition to Gov. McMaster: Preserve the Palmetto Bowl in 2020

Petition to Gov. McMaster: Preserve the Palmetto Bowl in 2020

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Lee Wardlaw started this petition to South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster

Between the Midlands and the Blue Ridge, the University of South Carolina and the Clemson University are separated by 132 miles. As time continues to pass, one thing remains the same: the Palmetto State's flagship and land grant institutions face off annually on the football field.

But in 2020, that won't be the case.

On July 30, the Southeastern Conference announced that it would be moving to a ten-game, conference-only schedule, nixing the football classic that South Carolinians have cherished for over a century.

The Gamecocks and Tigers first played in 1896, but the contest was put on hold for seven years following a riot between each school's students at the state fair's parade following the 1902 game.

The schools have faced 117 times overall, with Clemson leading the series 71-42-4.

The Palmetto Bowl was the college football's second-longest-running annual rivalry game.  South Carolina and Clemson haven't skipped a beat since 1908, facing off 111 consecutive times.

The rivalry survived World Wars I and II. The game was even mandated by state law on Feb. 27, 1952 after it was requested by both schools presidents and the S.C General Assembly that the game be played.

"Clemson aggressively lobbied the ACC to include an additional non-conference game the primary purpose of maintaining our long-standing rivalry game with South Carolina," Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich said in a statement.

South Carolina president Robert Casslen was the only dissenting vote in a 13-1 decision by the SEC to not include non-conference games on the schedule.

The state's flagship and land-grant universities represent the best that the Palmetto State has to offer in the classroom and on the football field, and the impact of the annual series has an  immerse impact on the economy, culture, and pride of South Carolina residents.

With that being said, I petition to Gov. Henry McMaster to bring the South Carolina-Clemson game back to the gridiron at all costs 2020. It's literally written in state law, which would be a good place to start. 

 

 

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