In the grand scheme of things, you could make the argument that the Gamecocks' game against Florida in 2010 or the SEC Championship game of that same year were more important than this game.
However, you would be wrong.
The October 6th matchup between these two teams has the makings of a classic. The traditional powerhouse versus the rising monster. Two schools bordering one another and fighting for the same recruits. Two SEC East powers trying to take back control of the SEC from the big bad west.
The storylines go on and on.
ESPN's GameDay will be there. It's going to be a sold-out crowd. This is just an epic time to be a Gamecocks fan.
It's going to be an amazing experience for anyone lucky enough to be in Columbia. Now, for the hard part...
The Gamecocks have to beat a very good Georgia team.
The bodies of work up until this point don't really point to a clear-cut favorite. Georgia's offense is wonderful, but their defense doesn't have the "elite" look.
Who do you think wins this game?
South Carolina dominated Missouri, a team that Georgia struggled with. Georgia dominated Vanderbilt, a team that South Carolina struggled with. There is no clear-cut road map to a favorite.
People are still doubting the Gamecocks. People want them to fail. The game against Vanderbilt and the first half against Kentucky have people in a "see, they aren't a top-10 team" type of mindset.
With a good Florida team and a great LSU team around the corner, as well as those overrated Clemson Tigers to finish the year, the Gamecocks need this game.
Not just for this team and this season. This is a program-defining game. This is a progress report for all of the hard work the school has put into the football program. Are they ready? Do they belong in the top 10? Can they beat a great team like Georgia?
We will see. Enjoy the ride. It's going to be a hell of a week.