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Gamecock Gameday: Men's Hoops To Host Ole Miss Saturday Night
Men's Basketball  . 

Gamecock Gameday: Men's Hoops To Host Ole Miss Saturday Night

Jan. 13, 2017

Game Information

Date: Sat., Jan. 14, 2017

Tipoff: 6:30 p.m. ET

Location: Columbia, S.C.

Arena: Colonial Life Arena (18,000)

Tickets: Click To Purchase

Broadcast: ESPNU

Radio: 107.5 (in Columbia)/Listen!

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina begins a two-game homestand on Saturday when it hosts Ole Miss at 6:30 p.m. (ESPNU). The Gamecocks have won two-straight in the series, including an overtime thriller last season in Oxford. The game will feature Gamecock head coach Frank Martin and Ole Miss’ Andy Kennedy, who coached together at Cincinnati and are longtime friends. The Carolina football team will also take part in the halftime program on Saturday.


South Carolina is in its 109th season of varsity basketball in 2016-17.
– On the sidelines, Frank Martin is joined by associate head coach Matt Figger, assistant coaches Perry Clark and Bruce Shingler, and director of operations Andy Assaley.
– Behind 22 points, including 16 in the second half, from senior guard Sindarius Thornwell, and 12 off the bench from sophomore guard Hassani Gravett, South Carolina closed a 10-point victory at Tennessee on Wednesday, 70-60. The win was Carolina’s second in the last three games in Knoxville, and just the second since the 2002 SEC campaign at Thompson-Boling Arena.
– Thornwell continued an impressive streak on the defensive end, collecting a team high four steals vs. the Vols. He has at least four steals in each conference game thus far in 2017, and leads the league in stricly conference games with 5.0 steals per outing.
– Carolina’s win at Tennessee was the 200th of head coach Frank Martin’s coaching career. He amassed a 117-54 record as head coach at Kansas State, and holds a mark of 83-66 in his fifth season at Carolina.
– South Carolina is 9-1 at home this season, averaging 75.6 points per game and hitting 44.9% from the field.
– South Carolina was 4-5 in SEC road games last season.
– South Carolina head coach Frank Martin is 79-78 (.503) all-time in conference games.
– South Carolina is in its 26th basketball season as a member of the Southeastern Conference. The Gamecocks are 158-253 (.382) all-time in SEC games.
– The Gamecocks currently rank 32nd in the NCAA RPI (games through Jan. 11), which is third in the SEC behind Florida (3rd) and Kentucky (6th).
– Nine different Gamecocks average at least 12 minutes per game, and seven different players provide at least five points per outing.
– Sophomore guard Hassani Gravett and freshman guard Rakym Felder have each led the Gamecocks in bench scoring four times in the last eight games. Gravett led the Gamecocks with 12 off the bench in the win at Tennessee.
– South Carolina ranks third nationally in field goal percentage defense (games through Jan. 11), allowing opponents to hit just 36.8% from the floor this season. That mark leads the SEC as well.
– South Carolina is out-scoring its opponents by 17.0 points per game in home contests this season, scoring 75.6 points per game, compared to 58.6 by its opponents.
– South Carolina is looking for just its second 4-0 start ever in SEC play. The 1996-97 Gamecocks began SEC action 11-0.


– The Rebels are 10-6 overall and 1-3 in league games entering Saturday’s matchup vs. South Carolina. Ole Miss most recently suffered a home loss to Georgia on Wednesday evening.
– Ole Miss is led by head coach Andy Kennedy in his 11th season.
– The Rebels began league play with a home loss to Kentucky, before suffering a loss on the road at Florida. Ole Miss rebounded with a win at Auburn last Saturday behind 15 points and 13 rebounds from Sebastian Saiz.
– Four average double-figure points for the Rebels, led by Deandre Burnett’s 18.0 per outing. Saiz (15.3), Terence Davis (12.1) and Cullen Neal (10.3) also average double figures. Burnett’s 18.3 in league games are also a team high.
– In the SEC stats, Ole Miss is fifth in scoring at 77.9 points per game, but the Rebels are 13th in scoring defense, as opponents average 76.9 points per outing. The Rebels are fifth in free throw percentage (74.2%), third in rebounding offense (40.2), fifth in rebound margin (+4.2) and third in blocked shots (5.7/20th nationally).
– Individually, Saiz leads the league in rebounding (11.5), and is fourth in field goal percentage (51.6). Burnett’s 91.0% at the free throw line is second in the league, and his 2.1 3s per game is ninth.


South Carolina senior student Jory Fleming will serve as the honorary captain for Saturday’s home contest vs. Ole Miss. Fleming, who has been named one of 32 U.S. winners of the Rhodes Scholarship, the oldest and most prestigious international fellowship award, will study at Oxford University in England for two years. Fleming, who has autism, credits his service dog, Daisy, along with University professors, advisers and classmates for his success. Fleming is the 10th University of South Carolina student to be awarded the Rhodes Scholarship and is the most decorated national fellowship winner in USC’s history, as he has been awarded the Rhodes, Truman, Goldwater and Hollings Scholarships.


Ole Miss leads the all-time series between the Gamecocks and Rebels, 18-17, but Carolina is 10-2 in games played in Columbia. South Carolina won an overtime thriller in Oxford in the last meeting, leading for just two minutes during regulation, and senior Michael Carrera scored five points in overtime to lead the Gamecocks in the win. Ole Miss won the last meeting in Columbia, 75-74, on J. 18, 2014.


2.0 – Sophomore forward Chris Silva is averaging 2.0 blocks per game this season, which ranks tied for fourth in the SEC and 42nd nationally.
2.2 – PJ Dozier’s 2.2 steals per game leads the Gamecocks and ranks first in the SEC and 21st nationally. Dozier has five games this season with at least three steals, and collected a season high four steals vs. FIU.
2.982 – The Gamecocks excelled in the classroom during the fall semester, as the team posted a cumulative GPA of 2.982.
5.0 – Senior guard Sindarius Thornwell is averaging 5.0 steals per game in league play. He collected four steals in the win at Tennessee on Wednesday.
52.4% – Rookie guard Rakym Felder is averaging 52.4% (11-21) from 3-point range over the course of the last 5 games. He was a perfect 3-of-3 in the win over A&M last Saturday from 3-point range.
60.0 – South Carolina ranks ninth in the country and leads the SEC in scoring defense, as opponents are averaging just 60.0 points per game this season.
111 – Senior guard Sindarius Thornwell currently ranks tied for third all-time in career games started in the Garnet and Black. Thornwell is tied with Gamecock great Alex English with 111 career starts. He is five starts away from tying Melvin Watson and BJ McKie for first all-time in the category (116).


South Carolina will host No. 23/23 Florida next Wednesday at Colonial Life Arena in a 6:30 p.m. ET, tip on the SEC Network. South Carolina won last season’s meeting between the two schools, 73-69, in overtime at Colonial Life Arena behind 20 points and 15 rebounds from Michael Carrera. Tom Hart (pxp) and Daymeon Fishback (analyst) will have the game call for the matchup.