Phil Steele, a nationally prominent writer who publishes one of the best college football previews on the newsstands, has South Carolina at No. 1 in one key category.
Steele contends in his 2009 preview magazine that USC has the toughest schedule in the nation. In terms of opponents’ records from 2008, the Gamecocks have the fourth toughest schedule. Last year, USC’s twelve 2009 regular season opponents went 98-58 for a won-lost percentage of 62.8 percent.
As most USC fans know, the Gamecocks open the season with a pair of road games at N.C. State and Georgia before starting a four-game homestand against Florida Atlantic on Sept. 19. Five days later, the Gamecocks host Ole Miss, which is a Top 15 team in most pre-season polls.