Muschamp makes first visit to Atlanta Gamecock Club

Muschamp makes first visit to Atlanta Gamecock Club

**Story and photo by Kyle Heck**

It was the fifth stop of the annual Spurs Up tour, but it was a stop that stood on its own.

Head football coach Will Muschamp visited Atlanta for the only out-of-state spring meeting this year. As a result, fans flooded The Pavilion at Olde Town to hear Muschamp in his first visit to the capital of Georgia. 

"It's great because it finally means that Atlanta is getting a cheering section, so to speak, for Columbia," said Michele Braddock-Beagle, the president of the Atlanta Gamecock Club. "It's big because just in the past year we've had the President, the Provost, coach (Frank) Martin and now coach Muschamp."

Nearly 200 people were present, making it one of the biggest Atlanta Gamecock Club meetings ever. Former South Carolina stars Eric Norwood, Jasper Brinkley and John Abraham were also present to show their support to the new regime. 

"They were all excited about coming," Braddock-Beagle said of the former stars. "They reached out to us when they saw that coach Muschamp was coming. They've all made Atlanta their home so they want to be a part of the Gamecock Nation that's here in Atlanta."

As he has at the rest of the Spurs Up events, Muschamp went in-depth about his football team, previewing the various positions before taking several questions from the crowd. 

Having a strong presence in the state of Georgia is something that's extremely important to Muschamp and his staff. Muschamp told the crowd in Atlanta that five different South Carolina coaches recruit the Peach State. 

"We have to recruit the state of Georgia extremely well," Muschamp said. "There's so many good players and outstanding coaches in this state, and it's important to be here and have a presence here. Other than Charlotte, our largest contingent of Gamecocks (out of state) are in Atlanta."

Braddock-Beagle and her staff with the Atlanta Gamecock Club have done a tremendous job of continuing to grow the Gamecock support in the Atlanta. Being one of the biggest cities in the country, Atlanta has dozens of schools represented in the area. The goal is to have more and more Garnet and Black in the area. 

"Atlanta is a very important area for us, membership wise," Gamecock Club Executive Director Patrick McFarland said. "They always draw a good crowd for us when we have coaches. This is coach Muschamp's first stop in Atlanta for the Spurs Up tour, so we're excited to be here."