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      Gamecocks just outside top 10 in preseason poll

      Gamecocks ranked 12th in USA Today preseason football poll

      COLUMBIA, SC (WACH) - Fresh off the program's first-ever SEC East title the University of South Carolina football team is getting some preseason praise in the polls.

      The USA Today Coaches Poll has the Gamecocks just outside the top 10 in the poll released on Thursday. USC settles in at No. 12 in the poll behind Nebraska. The Gamecocks finished the season with a 9-5 record last season and is one of eight SEC programs in the preseason Top 25.

      The Gamecocks opened fall practice Wednesday night at the Bluff Road Proving Grounds in helmets and shorts.

      I thought it was a pretty nice practice, said coach Steve Spurrier after the workout. All the coaches were really noticing the difference in our team speed. I think our speed has really improved with the addition of a lot of players, as well as the conditioning work of Coach Fitzgerald and the strength coaches this summer. We have a fast team. Hopefully we TMll have a team that can really play well.

      South Carolina returns to the practice field Thursday at 7:30 p.m. Coach Spurrier indicated the workouts would remain open to fans until further notice.

      What do you think of USC's preseason ranking? Is the team overrated, underrated or about right?