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April 13, 2005

A strong argument can be made that sophomore cornerback Johnathan Joseph was one of the best defensive players on the South Carolina roster last year before an early-season injury put him on the sidelines for the rest of the season. Joseph was a starter at cornerback, but saw the chance to prove himself in game situations slip away due to the injury.

Joseph is now healthy and has competed for a starting position this spring. In fact, he views this Saturday’s Garnet and Black Game as an important time to be at his best. Kickoff is set for 1:07 p.m. at Williams-Brice Stadium and the game will be televised nationally by ESPNU and ESPN2.

“This is an opportunity to make an impression going in to the summer,” Joseph said. “Everyone is still competing for spots and the Garnet and Black Game is an opportunity for all of us to establish ourselves.”

Joseph said the players will likely find out what the rosters for the Garnet and Black teams will look like tomorrow, but regardless of which side he is on, the atmosphere will be fun.

“We’ll all play hard, but we’ll also have a lot of fun out there,” Joseph said.

The opportunity to play the game in front of a national television audience doesn’t hurt, either.

“There is no question that we appreciate what we have here,” Joseph said. “I have friends from my junior college in Kansas that can’t make it to the stadium, but can still watch us play on television. We are blessed for this opportunity. At most places, the spring game isn’t even televised locally, much less nationally.”

Garnet and Black Game Info

Stadium parking lots and the Key Road lot will open at 9 a.m. Parking for the Fairgrounds will be available at 10 a.m. Gate 10, located on Bluff Road, must be used for all football parking at the Fairgrounds. All parking, including the Fairgrounds, is FREE.

All gates will open two hours prior to game time at 11 a.m. Admission is FREE.

Concessions will be available for purchase.

Several special events are planned in conjunction with the Garnet and Black Game. A dedication ceremony for the Charles F. Crews Football Facility, which features Carolina’s new football weight room and meeting facilities, will be held at 12:30 p.m. at the Southwest corner of Williams-Brice Stadium near Gate 5.

In addition, an unveiling of new signage inside Williams-Brice Stadium is planned for 12:45 p.m. The new signage will honor former Carolina football greats 1984 National Coach of the Year Joe Morrison, 1980 Heisman Trophy Winner George Rogers and 1986-1987 All-American Sterling Sharpe, along with USC’s 1969 Atlantic Coast Conference Championship Team.

Fans can expect an exciting game-day atmosphere on April 16. Be in your seats early as USC’s famous “2001” entrance will be broadcast live on ESPNU and ESPN2. The Gamecock cheerleaders and band will be on hand, and there will be numerous presentations on the video board. Spring football media guides will also be on sale for $3.

The game will consist of four, 12-minute quarters. A halftime break will be utilized.

The 2005 NIT Champion Gamecock men’s basketball team, including NIT MVP Carlos Powell, will be honored at halftime.

Also at halftime, Coach Spurrier will present the spring practice awards to the team.