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Jan. 28, 2016

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina is ranked No. 23 in the nation in the USA Today preseason coaches poll released on Thursday afternoon. The Gamecocks begin the 2016 season on Friday, Feb. 19 hosting Albany at Founders Park.

South Carolina is one of seven SEC schools to be ranked in the preseason poll. Also ranked is Florida (No. 1), Vanderbilt (No. 3), Texas A&M (No. 4), LSU (No. 5), Mississippi State (No. 17) and Arkansas (No. 22).

This is South Carolina’s third national ranking in the preseason. The Gamecocks are also No. 17 in the nation by D1Baseball and No. 35 by Collegiate Baseball.

The Gamecocks return five position starters, 13 pitchers and 23 letterwinners from last year’s team and will also feature a recruiting class that has been ranked as high as No. 2 in the nation by Collegiate Baseball. The team begins spring scrimmages on Friday at Founders Park with first pitch 4 p.m. All preseason scrimmages are open to the public and free of charge.

USA Today Coaches Preseason Top 25 
Rank – Team – (2015 Record)
1. Florida (52-18)
2. Louisville (47-18)
3. Vanderbilt (51-21)
4. Texas A&M (50-14)
5. LSU (54-12)
6. Miami (Fla.) (50-17)
7. Virginia (44-24)
8. Oregon State (39-18)

9. UCLA (45-16)
10. Oklahoma State (38-20)
11. TCU (51-15)
12. California (36-21)
13. Louisiana-Lafayette (42-23)
14. Florida State (44-21)
15. Oregon (38-25)
16. Cal State Fullerton (39-25)
17. Mississippi State (24-30)
18. Houston (43-20)
19. NC State (36-23)
20. Southern California (39-21)
20. North Carolina (34-24)
22. Arkansas (40-25)
23. South Carolina (32-25)
24. Rice (37-22)
25. Missouri State (49-12)

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South Carolina won the NCAA Division I Baseball Championship in 2010 and 2011 at the College World Series. South Carolina has made 11 College World Series appearances including six times in the last 14 years. In those 11 appearances, the Gamecocks have went 32-20 for a .615 winning percentage, that is sixth-best among winning percentage leaders in CWS history.

South Carolina is one of three schools in the nation to have reached at least 11 NCAA Super Regionals since 2000 and has the most NCAA Super Regional appearances of the 14 SEC schools since 2000. In addition the Gamecocks own the second-highest win total in Division I baseball since 2000 (745-314 record) and more conference wins than any SEC team since 2000 (288-189 record).

Recently, South Carolina is one of only five schools in the nation to host a NCAA Regional in five of the last six years.

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