South Carolina will be 12th in SEC

September 26, 1990

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The University of South Carolina made it official yesterday, accepting an invitation to join the Southeastern Conference and accomplishing its goal of becoming a member of an all-sports league.

Presidents of SEC schools voted earlier yesterday, during a conference call, to ask South Carolina to join the league, which added Arkansas in August. Since then, the SEC had been searching for a 12th member to give it an even number of schools.

"Today is a great day for South Carolina," Arthur K. Smith, the school's interim president, said at a news conference. "This afternoon, on behalf of the 10-member universities, commissioner Roy Kramer of the Southeastern Conference extended an invitation of membership to the University of South Carolina.

"On behalf of the University of South Carolina . . . I enthusiastically accepted that invitation. This decision culminated more than three months of growing expectation during which the university and the SEC became increasingly convinced that our membership in the SEC would be very good for both of us."

South Carolina had been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference from its inception in 1953 until it withdrew June 30, 1971, becoming the first -- and only -- school to leave the ACC. South Carolina joined the Metro Conference on April 14, 1983.

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