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Jan. 2, 2012

The South Carolina men’s basketball team (7-6) is set to host SC State (4-9) in its final regular season non-conference contest on Tuesday at Colonial Life Arena. The game, which will not be televised, is set to begin at 7 p.m.

Date: Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Tipoff: 7 p.m. ET
Location: Columbia, S.C.
Arena: Colonial Life Arena
Series: South Carolina leads, 17-0
Television: None
Radio: Andy Demetra (pxp), Casey Manning (analyst)
Click HERE for a list of radio affiliates.

Game NotesGet Acrobat Reader

Carolina Quick Hits
– South Carolina is in its 104th season of basketball.
– The Gamecocks are led by fourth-year head coach Darrin Horn.
– South Carolina continues its longest homestand of the season when it hosts SC State on Tuesday. The Gamecocks own a 17-0 all-time record against the Bulldogs. The contest marks the final regular season non-conference game for South Carolina prior to the start of SEC play next Saturday at No. 3 Kentucky.
– Paced by Malik Cooke’s double-double and career high 24 points, the Gamecocks earned a 72-66 victory versus intrastate foe USC Upstate on Saturday. South Carolina, without Bruce Ellington in the contest as he prepared for the Capital One Bowl in Orlando, surpassed the 70-point plateau for the first time since a 75-point performance vs. Western Carolina in the season opener.
– Sophomore guard Brenton Williams, who has played sparingly since a left knee injury on Nov. 20 vs. Tennessee State, stepped into the lineup on Saturday, playing 20 minutes and scoring 11 points vs. USC Upstate. The 20 minutes for Williams marked a season high.
– South Carolina ranks fifth in the SEC and among the nation’s top 30 with 5.5 blocks per game.
– The Gamecocks will open SEC play at No. 3 Kentucky on Jan. 7. It will mark the fourth time in its history that South Carolina will face Kentucky to open the SEC season.
– South Carolina ranks first in the SEC in rebounding defense, as Carolina opponents collect just 31.7 rebounds per game. The Gamecocks have out-rebounded eight of 13 opponents this season.
– In games it has won this season, South Carolina holds a +11.0 scoring margin over its opponents. To compare, in games in has lost, Gamecock opponents score 8.5 more points per game.
– The Gamecocks own a 401-341 (.540) all-time record in the month of January. South Carolina earned a 4-4 record during the month last season, including overtime victories over No. 22/24 Vanderbilt and Arkansas in SEC play.
– South Carolina owns a 20-1 (.952) all-time record against current schools in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, with its most common opponent being SC State, whom the Gamecocks own a 17-0 all-time record against. The Gamecocks are undefeated in home contests vs. the conference. Carolina’s lone loss against a MEAC school came against Coppin State in the 1997 NCAA Tournament.

By The Numbers
24 & 10 – Redshirt-senior forward Malik Cooke tallied a career high 24 points, while collecting 10 rebounds for his first double-double of the season vs. USC Upstate. It marked the third double-double of his career, as he tallied one while at Nevada – 12 points, 10 rebounds against Hawaii during the 2008-09 season – and one last season while at Carolina – 11 points, 11 rebounds vs. Arkansas.
6 – Sophomore guard Brian Richardson has struggled from the field this season, but he stepped up against USC Upstate, hitting two huge 3s, one in both the first and second half, to help propel the Gamecocks to the win.
51.1% – South Carolina shot a stellar 51.1% (23-45), including 60.0% (15-25) during the first half, in the victory over USC Upstate. It marked the third time this season that the Gamecocks have shot 50% or better in a contest.
32 – South Carolina tallied 32 points in the paint, nearly five points above its season average, against USC Upstate. It marked the most points in the category for the Gamecocks since posting 34 in a win over Presbyterian on Dec. 13.

Scouting SC State
The Bulldogs continue a lengthy road swing on Tuesday at South Carolina … The contest marks the seventh straight on the road for SC State … SC State has played 9 of their last 10 games on the road dating back to a Nov. 22 contest at Baylor … The squad most recently suffered a 100-73 loss at Hawaii on Dec. 29 … Senior guard Brandon Riley leads three in double figures, posting 18.6 points per game, while senior guard Khalif Toombs (11.8) and senior forward Omar Sanders (10.7) also add double-digit points for the Bulldogs … SC State’s last win came in a double OT contest at Kennesaw State on Nov. 26.

SC State Series Information
South Carolina has hosted SC State 17 times in Columbia, and has won all 17 contests. The team’s first met in a 79-78 Gamecock win on Dec. 3, 1979. South Carolina won last season’s meeting between the two schools, 91-56.