It is now official. The Outback Bowl will feature a South Carolina-Michigan rematch on Jan. 1, 2018 at 12 p.m. in Tampa, Fla.
It will be the fourth time the Gamecocks and Wolverines have played.
South Carolina coach Will Muschamp led his team to an 8-4 record in his second season in Columbia. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh also finished with an 8-4 record in Year 3 at his alma mater.
The two programs look completely different from the ones that played in 2013. Steve Spurrier and the Gamecocks were in the midst of the most successful stretch in program history while Brady Hoke was in his second season coaching the Wolverines.
That game, which South Carolina won 33-28, featured one of college football’s signature highlights. ‘The Hit’ by Jadeveon Clowney received plenty of airtime in the ensuing weeks and months before winning ‘Best Play’ at that year’s ESPY Awards.
Clowney’s hit propelled South Carolina to win No. 3 in the Outback Bowl. The first two were under Lou Holtz in 2001 and 2002 against Michigan’s archrival, Ohio State. South Carolina’s one loss in the game was in 2009 to Iowa.
Ace Sanders played a starring role for the Gamecocks in the 2013 game, catching 9 passes for 92 yards with 2 touchdowns. He also had a punt return for a score. Connor Shaw and Dylan Thompson shared time at quarterback, combining for 341 passing yards and 4 touchdowns.
South Carolina leads the all-time series with Michigan, 2-1.