Editor's note: South Carolina announced Wednesday that the game has been moved to Baton Rouge, La.
South Carolina officials have reached out to the Panthers about the possibility of moving Saturday’s scheduled home football game against LSU to Charlotte in the wake of severe flooding in Columbia.
The Gamecocks’ Williams-Brice Stadium and surrounding areas weathered the storm without major damage, and the field was mostly dry Tuesday morning, The (Columbia) State reported. But damaged roads, the city’s water service and availability of police and first responders Saturday could make hosting a game difficult.
The Gamecocks opened the season Sept. 3 with a win against North Carolina at Bank of America Stadium.
The Panthers have a bye this week, and don’t play at home again until Oct. 25 against Philadelphia.
But there are obstacles to moving the game to Charlotte, including a scarcity of hotel rooms in the area because of the NASCAR Sprint Cup race Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The Panthers have typically had byes or road games during the weekend of Charlotte’s fall Sprint Cup race.
The Panthers recently re-seeded the stadium grass, so that also could be a potential stumbling block.
“We have been in communication with the University of South Carolina. They are doing their due diligence and going through the process concerning their game this weekend. They have a lot of things to consider and we just want to offer our support,” Panthers President Danny Morrison said in a statement.
South Carolina has spoken to LSU about playing the game in Baton Rouge, but the Gamecocks’ first preference would be to play at home. Kickoff is scheduled for noon Saturday.
South Carolina athletics director Ray Tanner said he hopes to make a final decision in the next 24 to 36 hours, according to The State.
“Our intentions are to stay on schedule and play here in Columbia, but it’s not a definite,” Tanner said.
DE Horton returns, but OT Foucault cut
Three days after cutting defensive end Wes Horton and signing offensive tackle David Foucault, the Panthers have re-signed Horton and cut Foucault.
The flip-flop is essentially a bunch of paperwork the Panthers have to endure after needing Foucault for insurance in Sunday’s victory over Tampa Bay.
With Carolina’s backup tackles Daryl Williams and Amini Silatolu sidelined, the Panthers needed a backup on the active roster for the game. They signed Foucault from the practice squad in case something happened to Michael Oher or Mike Remmers.
To make room for Foucault, they released Horton just days after signing defensive end Ryan Delaire off Washington’s practice squad.
Now the Panthers have more than a week and a half until their next game and must feel good about the health of one or two backups. Foucault can be signed back to the practice squad if he clears waivers after 24 hours.