The South Carolina Gamecocks were completely outmatched when they faced the No. 9 Oklahoma State Cowboys and were defeated, as expected. In the 79-52 loss, the Gamecocks couldn’t handle the superior scoring power of a team that, simply put, just had more talent and experience. The good news is that they held Marcus Smart to under 20 points.
South Carolina should not worry about the loss to a far superior team. Losses against good teams are going to happen all season long. The Gamecocks are in an SEC with eight teams that could make a run to gain potential 2014 NCAA Tournament berth, and don’t stand much of a chance against the upper portion of the SEC. This season is going to be bad, and there’s not much that South Carolina can do to change that.
However, Frank Martin, in his second year of coaching for South Carolina since moving from the Kansas State Wildcats, has this team on the right track. Last season, the Gamecocks would have lost to Oklahoma State by 60 points. There has been a significant progression under Martin’s leadership.
It’s not going to happen next year, but the Gamecocks are moving in the right direction under Martin. If he can continue to bring in recruits of the same talent level of Sindarius Thornwell, South Carolina may be able to compete for a spot in the NCAA Tournament in two years . This season may be all but over for the Gamecocks, but the future is a lot brighter than anyone realizes.