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      Gamecocks post highest finish in history

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (USC) - The University of South Carolina football finished the 2012 season as the highest ranked squad in school history, it was announced Tuesday.

      The Gamecocks finished eighth in the final Associated Press poll and seventh in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll, both one spot higher than in 2011."I'm very proud of our team and what we accomplished this season," said head coach Steve Spurrier. "We are obviously thrilled to be ranked one spot better than we were last year and the highest in school history. Much of the credit goes to our seniors, especially the leadership provided by our captains - D.J. Swearinger, T.J. Johnson, Justice Cunningham and Shaq Wilson - which was instrumental in our success. We lose a lot of outstanding players but have a good nucleus returning for next season," continued the Head Ball Coach. "Our goals will be just as high. Our No. 1 goal is to win the SEC Championship and we'll try to accomplish that next season."The Gamecocks finished the season with an 11-2 record following a 33-28 win over Michigan in the Outback Bowl on January 1, and have posted a school-record 11 wins in each of the past two seasons. Carolina has recorded the most wins in two- (22), three- (31) and four- (38) consecutive seasons in school history. In addition, the Gamecocks have been ranked among the nation's top-25 for 47 consecutive polls, the most in school history and tied for the fifth-longest current streak in the nation.The 2012 Gamecocks defeated four teams that finished among the AP top 25 including Georgia (5), Clemson (11), Vanderbilt (23) and Michigan (24).The SEC finished the year with five teams in the AP's top 10: Alabama (1), Georgia (5), Texas A&M (5), South Carolina (8) and Florida (9). LSU finished 14th, while Vanderbilt came in at number 23. The SEC has captured seven consecutive national championships.AP Top 25 Record Pts Pv1. Alabama (59) 13-1 1,475 22. Oregon 12-1 1,358 53. Ohio St. 12-0 1,302 34. Notre Dame 12-1 1,288 15. Georgia 12-2 1,230 65. Texas A&M 11-2 1,230 107. Stanford 12-2 1,169 88. South Carolina 11-2 1,038 119. Florida 11-2 933 410. Florida St. 12-2 922 1311. Clemson 11-2 889 1412. Kansas St. 11-2 871 713. Louisville 11-2 781 2214. LSU 10-3 756 915. Oklahoma 10-3 615 1216. Utah St. 11-2 456 1817. Northwestern 10-3 443 2118. Boise St. 11-2 419 2019. Texas 9-4 358 NR20. Oregon St. 9-4 303 1521. San Jose St. 11-2 243 2422. N. Illinois 12-2 227 1623. Vanderbilt 9-4 180 NR24. Michigan 8-5 147 1925. Nebraska 10-4 119 23Others receiving votes: Baylor 95, Penn St. 90, Cincinnati 78, Oklahoma St. 42, Tulsa 34, UCLA 31, Arkansas St. 28, TCU 9, UCF 9, Wisconsin 6, N. Dakota St. 1.USA Today Coaches Poll Record Pts Pvs1. Alabama (56) 13-1 1,400 22. Oregon 12-1 1,322 33. Notre Dame 12-1 1,253 14. Georgia 12-2 1,213 55. Texas A&M 11-2 1,171 96. Stanford 12-2 1,167 87. South Carolina 11-2 1,064 108. Florida State 12-2 942 129. Clemson 11-2 916 1310. Florida 11-2 886 411. Kansas State 11-2 841 612. LSU 10-3 775 713. Louisville 11-2 772 1814. Boise State 11-2 633 1515. Oklahoma 10-3 600 1116. Northwestern 10-3 580 1717. Utah State 11-2 444 2018. Texas 9-4 398 2519. Oregon State 9-4 366 1420. Vanderbilt 9-4 248 NR21. San Jose State 11-2 244 2422. Cincinnati 10-3 186 NR23. Nebraska 10-4 175 2124. Northern Illinois 12-2 156 1625. Tulsa 11-3 110 NROthers receiving votes: Michigan 101; UCLA 75; Baylor 52; Oklahoma State 36; Wisconsin 18; Central Florida 15; Arkansas State 13; Arizona State 10; Rutgers 9; Kent State 5; Louisiana Tech 2; Arizona 1; Ohio 1.

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