Sports

Gamecock Hoops: The Turnaround Continues

SOUTH CAROLINA RANKED, UNDEFEATED … The critics remain, but so far the University of South Carolina men’s basketball team is doing a damn good job answering them. Led by senior All-American candidate Sindarius Thornwell, the Gamecock program is off to another hot start this season – racing to a 7-0 record…

SOUTH CAROLINA RANKED, UNDEFEATED …

The critics remain, but so far the University of South Carolina men’s basketball team is doing a damn good job answering them.

Led by senior All-American candidate Sindarius Thornwell, the Gamecock program is off to another hot start this season – racing to a 7-0 record that includes convincing victories over ranked opponents No. 18 Syracuse and No. 25 Michigan.

Thornwell – a 6-foot-5 senior from Lancaster, S.C. – is averaging 18.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game so far.  All of those marks are well above his career averages.

As a result head coach Frank Martin‘s program is continuing its upward trajectory – with the goal being the Gamecocks’ first NCAA appearance since 2004.

That would be a big deal.  An even bigger deal?  Winning a game in the “Big Dance.”  South Carolina hasn’t won an NCAA tournament game since 1973.

Martin inherited a program in shambles, and his first two seasons in Columbia, S.C. were downright disastrous.  His teams posted a 28-38 record (and a 9-27 conference mark) prior to breaking even with a 17-16 mark during the 2014-15 season.

Since then, the Gamecocks have been on a roll – winning 32 out of their last 41 games.  They’re now ranked No. 20 nationally in the Associated Press poll and No. 23 nationally in the USA Today Coaches’ poll.

(Banner via Travis Bell Photography)

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