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Sept. 12, 2012

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina men’s basketball staff, led by first-year head coach Frank Martin, released its non-conference schedule for the 2012-13 season on Wednesday. The slate features 10 home dates, including one exhibition, to be played at Colonial Life Arena, two trips to New York City and an international visit to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, to highlight the lineup.

“We’re excited to release our first non-conference schedule at South Carolina,” Martin said. “Several home contests and early season travel will challenge us to grow and prepare for the 18-game SEC schedule ahead of us.”

In the non-conference portion of its schedule, the Gamecocks will take part in three events, including the Hoops for Hope Classic with games in Columbia and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, the annual SEC/BIG EAST Challenge, as well as the Brooklyn Hoops Holiday Invitational. The latter two will see the Gamecocks travel to New York City.

South Carolina opens its 105th season of varsity basketball with an exhibition contest versus eight-time NCAA Division II National Champion Kentucky Wesleyan on Oct. 30 at Colonial Life Arena. The meeting between the two schools marks the fifth-straight season the squads have met in an exhibition contest. The regular season begins on Nov. 11 when 2012 CBI participant and 20-game winner UW-Milwaukee visits Columbia, a contest which marks the first of two on-campus games as part of the Hoops For Hope Classic. The Panthers return three starters from last year’s squad, including senior guard Paris Gulley, who shot 40 percent from 3-point range last season.

Non-conference play continues when the Gamecocks host Morgan State on Nov. 16, before a Nov. 19 matchup against Rider, which concludes on-campus play for the Classic. South Carolina will host Elon on Nov. 21, prior to traveling to Puerto Vallarta to face Missouri State on Nov. 24, before playing either SMU, led by first-year head coach Larry Brown, or University of Arkansas Little Rock on Nov. 25.

Carolina returns to the United States for the SEC/BIG EAST Challenge the following week when it makes its first trip of the season to New York to face St. John’s at the Carnesecca Arena. The meeting between the Gamecocks and Red Storm marks the fourth all-time and the first since 1975. The Gamecocks return to Columbia to defend their two-game win streak versus intrastate rival Clemson on Dec. 2, before hosting Jacksonville on Dec. 7.

Following the break for exams, South Carolina will host Appalachian State on Dec. 19 before a return trip to the Big Apple when the team plays a neutral site contest with Manhattan in the Brooklyn Hoops Holiday Invitational at the new home of the Brooklyn Nets, the Barclays Center, on Dec. 22. The Jaspers enjoyed a banner season in 2011-12, posting a 15-game win improvement over the previous season, collecting 21 victories on the year and play in the postseason Tournament.

Following the holiday break, non-conference action concludes when the Gamecocks host Presbyterian on Dec. 29 and SC State on Jan. 5.

Game times and television details for the non-conference portion of the schedule will be released at a later date.

Schedule as of Sept. 12:
Oct. 30, vs. Kentucky Wesleyan (exhibition)
Nov. 11, vs. UW Milwaukee (Hoops for Hope Classic, Columbia, S.C.)
Nov. 16, vs. Morgan State
Nov. 19, vs. Rider (Hoops for Hope Classic, Columbia, S.C.)
Nov. 21, vs. Elon
Nov. 24, vs. Missouri State (Hoops for Hope Classic, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)
Nov. 25, vs. SMU/UALR (Hoops for Hope Classic, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)
Nov. 29, at St. John’s (SEC/BIG EAST Challenge)
Dec. 2, vs. Clemson
Dec. 7, vs. Jacksonville
Dec. 19, vs. Appalachian State
Dec. 22, vs. Manhattan (Brooklyn Hoops Holiday Invitational, Brooklyn N.Y.)
Dec. 29, vs. Presbyterian
Jan. 5, vs. SC State

SEC Schedule:
Jan. 9, at Mississippi State, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN3
Jan. 12, vs. Auburn, 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Jan. 16, at LSU, TBA, ESPN3
Jan. 19, vs. Vanderbilt, 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Jan. 22, at Missouri, 7 p.m. ET, ESPNU
Jan. 26, vs. Arkansas, 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Jan. 30, at Florida, 8 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Feb. 2, vs. Georgia, 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Feb. 5, at Kentucky, 9 p.m. ET, ESPNU
Feb. 10, vs. Tennessee, 1 p.m. ET, FSN
Feb. 14, vs. LSU, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
Feb. 16, at Alabama, 4 p.m. ET, SEC Network
Feb. 20, vs. Ole Miss, 7 p.m., CSS
Feb. 23, at Georgia, 2 p.m. ET, CBS
Feb. 28, vs. Missouri, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
March 2, at Texas A&M, 7 p.m. ET, ESPNU
March 6, vs. Mississippi State, TBA, ESPN3
March 9, at Vanderbilt, 1:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
March 13-17, TBA, SEC Network/ABC