South Carolina football program 2014

Dear Carolina Family,

I so enjoy being President of this great University. Everywhere I go in-state or out, I am enthusiastically greeted with the familiar and much-loved "Go Gamecocks!" You have no idea. People have yelled it from passing cabs. Out of shouting range? No problem, I'll see a hand raised high in a distinctive spur. I have even heard a whispered "Go Gamecocks!" during church services. I relish every Gamecock hello and high-five because I know exactly how you feel. Summer is over! Let the games begin.

As any good Gamecock fan knows, Williams-Brice Stadium is a place of great expectations, joy and pride. Stadium seats are filled with true garnet and black believers who absolutely rock the house while willing our student-athletes and coaches to great victories.

Our Carnegie top-tier research University is rocking as well with 32,000 students who are hard at work discovering new ideas, exploring innovative possibilities, participating in community service and finding time to dream. In addition to its high academic rankings, Carolina is also known for strategic efficiency highlighted as one of the 15 most efficient universities in the country and one of the nation's best values among public colleges and universities. I am particularly proud that South Carolina's flagship university has become the destination for families throughout the state and beyond. They know that, year after year, we offer a superior, life-changing student experience.

There's no question that whether our students are on the field, pitch, track, court or cheering from the stands – our athletic teams bring the Carolina family together. What a year we had in 2013-14! Our football team brought home 11 wins for the third straight year, we won our fifth consecutive game against our rival to the north and Jadeveon Clowney was the NFL's No.1 draft pick! Women's basketball captured the SEC regular season title and moved on to the Sweet 16, our equestrians brought home back-to-back SEC Championships and both women's and men's golf ranked No. 6 and No. 9 respectively in the NCAA Championships.

We are delighted that Carolina Stadium has been named one of the best spots in the country to catch a college baseball game. Most important, 92 student-athletes graduated from Carolina last year and our student-athletes' GPAs consistently rank at the top of the Southeastern Conference with 181 of our athletes on the dean's list and 61 on the president's list.

The year ahead is full of promise and our momentum has no limits!

Go Gamecocks!

Harris Pastides