Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Ranked or rank

The Gamecocks will have to break with history if they want to keep alive their hopes for an FCS playoff bid.

They play Eastern Illinois Saturday at Paul Snow Stadium. Both teams are 6-3 overall, 5-1 in the Ohio Valley Conference. The Panthers are ranked No. 25 in The Sports Network poll, No. 22 in the FCS Coaches poll.

The Gamecocks haven’t fared well against ranked teams over the years. Since joining I-AA in 1995, they are 3-29 against ranked opponents. They’ve lost their last seven in a row and 11 of their last 12. They’re 3-14 against ranked opponents under coach Jack Crowe.

The Gamecocks’ last win over a ranked foe came in 2002, when they knocked off then-No. 3 Northwestern (La.) State, 19-10. Their other ranked wins came in 2001 (No. 21 Southwest Texas) and 2000 (No. 10 Northwestern State).

They have played at least one team ranked 1 through 11. They’ve played teams that were ranked No. 2 or No. 3 four times each, No. 4 or No. 22 three times each.

The Gamecocks have been ranked 30 times since moving up, but haven’t been in a major poll since pulling down a No. 25 in The Sports Network poll on Sept. 18, 2006. Their highest ranking was No. 12 in both polls Oct. 18, 2004.


It appears soccer coach Julie Davis is safe for another term.

Davis, whose program reportedly was rocked with an in-season assistant's resignation and player discontent, has come to the end of her initial three-year contract. While she hasn't had her year-end evaluation with athletic director Jim Fuller yet -- that's supposed to be next week -- no change seems forthcoming.

"I don’t anticipate any surprises from her and she doesn’t anticipate any from me," Fuller said. "It's not like we haven't talked (about this) before."

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