(USC Athletics) - The Belk Bowl announced today that the South Carolina Gamecocks will face the Virginia Cavaliers in the 2018 Belk Bowl. Kickoff is set for noon on Saturday, December 29. The game, celebrating its 17th year, will be televised nationally by ABC. For the 2018 Belk Bowl, South Carolina is designated the away team and Virginia is designated the home team.
South Carolina will be making its first appearance in the Belk Bowl, but they have played regular season games in Charlotte three times. They are a perfect 3-0 at Bank of America Stadium, most recently defeating NC State, 35-28, to open the 2017 season.
Virginia is making its third appearance in the game and in Charlotte. They have a perfect 2-0 record at Bank of America Stadium. The Cavaliers won the inaugural Belk Bowl in 2002, defeating West Virginia, 48-22, and then beat Pittsburgh, 23-16, in 2003.
“We are pleased to welcome South Carolina and Virginia to the 2018 Belk Bowl,” said Will Webb, Belk Bowl Executive Director. “The Gamecocks and Cavaliers have each enjoyed a great season, and they should have an exciting, competitive game on the field. Both teams have tremendous, enthusiastic fans that should make the 2018 Belk Bowl very memorable. We look forward to hosting the teams and their fans in Charlotte!”
South Carolina finished the season with a 7-5 overall record (4-4 SEC) and tied for third in the SEC East Division. This is their third-straight bowl appearance. The Gamecocks have won five of their last six bowl games.
Virginia finished the season with a 7-5 overall record (4-4 ACC). They finished tied for third in the ACC Coastal Division.
“We’re excited for another trip to the Queen City,” said South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp. “Charlotte has one of the largest, if not the largest, University of South Carolina alumni bases outside the Palmetto state. Bank of America Stadium, where the Carolina Panthers play, is a great venue for a game and we’ve had a lot of success there. I know Will Webb and his staff at the Belk Bowl will make this a memorable experience for our squad, but our goal is to win our eighth game of the season. I expect to see a great contingent of Gamecock fans in Charlotte to help us achieve our goal.”
“To be selected to play in this year’s Belk Bowl is a tremendous honor for our team and we are excited to return to Charlotte where Virginia won the bowl’s first two games in 2002 and 2003,” said Virginia Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall. “One of the team’s goals this year was to play in back-to-back bowl games for the first time in 14 seasons. I am proud they have accomplished that and took another step in establishing the New Standard for the program. I have mentioned before the renewed energy and enthusiasm our fans generated at Scott Stadium this year. Given the proximity to Charlotte, we look forward to many of them making the trip to Charlotte for the Belk Bowl and bringing that passion with them.”