#14 South Carolina
Coach: Frank Martin (1st season at South Carolina). Overall 117-54 , 5 years
2011-12: Record 10-21 overall, 2-14 in SEC(12th)
Starters Returning (2) Bruce Ellington, Damien Leonard
Preseason Tournament: None
Top Non-Conference Games: at St. John’s, vs. Clemson
Transfer in : LaShay Page (Southern Mississippi- eligible right away)
Transfers Out : Anthony Gill (Virginia); Damontre Harris (Florida)
Out of nowhere Frank Martin left Kansas State and took the South Carolina job. Why Martian did this I don’t know. He clearly had more talent at KSU than he does South Carolina. The Gamecocks lose their 3 out of their top 4 scorers. What really hurts is that two of those players transferred out of the program.
The strength of this South Carolina team will be in the backcourt, they are returning two starters from last year’s team. Heading the point guard duties will be Bruce Ellington (11 ppg). He is a very talent athlete, who is also on the school’s football team. Joining him in the backcourt will be Damien Leonard (6.8 ppg). Leonard needs to increase his scoring load. The Gamecocks have plenty of depth here. Lashay Page (11.6 ppg) is a transfer from Southern Mississippi. Eric Smith (4.1 ppg) has starting experience. Brenton Williams (6.1 ppg) and Brain Richardson (3.2 ppg) have plenty of experience. Freshman Tarik Phillip may also provide depth.
The questions for the team will be in the frontcourt. They already received bad news when Carlton Geathers (1 ppg) suffered a fractured new cap. It is unclear when he will return. Two roles players last season will need to produce more as starters this season. Lakeem Jackson (3.2 ppg) should handle the three spot and RJ Slawson (4.5 ppg) will be the power forward. Freshman Laimonas Chatkvevicus will likely start at center he followed Martin from Kansas State. The depth is very inexperienced. It consists of freshman Thaddeus Hall, Mindaugas Kacinas, and Michael Carrera.