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South Carolina vs. Penn State in first game Thanksgiving Day at Old Spice Classic in Disneyworld
Brandis Raley-Ross
 
Brandis Raley-Ross

Nov. 21, 2007

South Carolina, celebrating its 100th season of Gamecock basketball, will travel to Orlando to take on Penn State at Noon on Thanksgiving Day (Thurs., Nov. 22) in the first game of the Old Spice Classic at the Milk House at Disney Wide World of Sports (see bracket on page 2). It is South Carolina's first appearance in the Old Spice Classic which also features Central Florida, George Mason, North Carolina State, Rider and Villanova. SEC-mate Arkansas captured the inaugural Old Spice Classic by defeating West Virginia 71-64 in 2006.

Penn State enters the game at 2-0 with a 53 point win over Canisius on Fri., Nov. 16, winning 93-40 in State College, Penn. South Carolina, 2-1, fell 85-75 to Southern California on Sat., Nov. 17 in Columbia. The South Carolina-Penn State game will be shown live on ESPN2 with Bob Picozzi and Len Elmore making the call. It is the second of 21 appearances South Carolina will make on television this year. It can also be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network with Mike Morgan (play-by-play) and Casey Manning (color analyst). In addition, it can be picked up via the internet at www.gamecocksonline.com.

South Carolina last played in a Thanksgiving Weekend tournament in 2005 when it made the finals of the ESPN-televised Great Alaska Shootout with wins over Alaska-Anchorage and Monmouth before falling to Marquette in the championship game 92-89 in overtime.

South Carolina vs. Penn State

South Carolina and Penn State have each won one game piece against one another. South Carolina won the first meeting between the two schools, 70-60, Feb. 4, 1981. The next year the Nittany Lions won 62-60 in Happy Valley.

Penn State was 11-19 last season and returns four starters. The Gamecocks are 11-19 vs. the Big Ten Conference. South Carolina's last game vs. a Big Ten team: South Carolina defeated Michigan 76-64 to win its second straight NIT title March 30, 2006.

South Carolina has no players from the Keystone State, but the Gamecocks do have two coaches with Pennsylvania ties. Gamecock assistant coach Ken Potosnak is a New Kensington native. Graduate assistant Steve Portland is a 2005 graduate of Penn State. He is also a graduate of Bishop Guilfoyle High School in Altoona, Penn. and is the son of former Penn State head women's basketball coach Rene Portland.

 

 

If and When Then

If South Carolina wins on Thursday, it will play the winner of the North Carolina State-Rider game on Fri., Nov. 23 at 12:30 pm on ESPN. If South Carolina loses it will play the loser of the same game from above at 10:30 am on ESPN2 on Fri., Nov. 23.

Last time out ...

South Carolina fell 85-75 to Southern California on Sat., Nov. 17 in Columbia. A few Gamecock highlights included:

+ Dominique Archie starting his 33rd straight game. Archie scored 17 of his 20 points in the second half - scoring 20+ points for the third time in his career. Archie was 1-of-2 in the first half with three points and only played 7 minutes due to 3 fouls.

+ Zam Fredrick and Devan Downey scored 21 of South Carolina's 30 points in the first half. Both have scored in double figures all three games this season. Downey leads the team with 16.7 ppg and 4.4 apg. Fredrick and Dominique Archie are both averaging 13.3 ppg. Archie is second on the team with 5.0 rpg.

+ Brandis Raley-Ross scored all 18 points in the second half and tied a career high with 18 points (4-5 from the 3). Raley-Ross did not attempt a shot in 10 minutes of play in the first half.

+ Sam Muldrow has at least 7 rebounds in all three games this season. Sam had 4 blocks in his first game and 2 blocks in the Southern California game. He leads the team with 7.7 rpg and 2.3 bpg.

+ The Gamecocks averaged 22.5 assists on 38 field goals made in their first two games of the season, but recorded only 8 assists on 26 field goals made against Southern California.

+ 73 of South Carolina's 75 points came from its five starters.

TV Time

South Carolina is scheduled to make 21 regular-season appearances on television this year, including looks on the ESPN network (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU) four times. USC was on TV a school-record 29 times in 2005-06.

Mr. Basketball

Wondering where all of South Carolina's Mr. Basketball's are playing college ball? Look no further than the University of South Carolina. Zam Fredrick was Mr. Basketball in 2004, Devan Downey was Mr. Basketball in 2005 and Mike Holmes was Mr. Basketball in 2007. Mr. Basketball 2003, Brandon Wallace (at USC from 2003-07), broke USC's career blocks record and games played record before moving onto the NBA's Boston Celtics this year.

Diaper Dandies

Carolina has started three sophomores, a freshman and a senior in the exhibition game and its first three games of the season. South Carolina has seven newcomers on its roster this season, including three transfers and two walk-ons.

Carolina started at least two freshmen in 21 of 30 games last season. USC started three freshman against No. 25 Kentucky on Jan. 16, 2007 in Columbia.

Odom on the verge of 400 wins

South Carolina head coach Dave Odom has 394 career wins in his 22 years as a head coach at East Carolina (38), Wake Forest (240) and South Carolina (116). He would be the 28th active coach to reach 400 wins with two others nationally hot on the track as well. Also looking at 400 wins on the national scene: Mike Deane (Wagner, 395) and Tom Green (Fairleigh Dickinson, 392). Odom is already currently the winningest all-time coach in the SEC.

He is?

Basketball is in the Gamecocks blood!

Freshman Sam Muldrow is the cousin of former two-time All-SEC forward Carlos Powell, the Gamecocks' 2005 NIT MVP. Their mothers are sisters (Donna McCall is Carlos' mother and Lisa Backus is Sam's mother).

Zam Fredrick II is the son of former Gamecock All-American Zam Fredrick who led the nation in scoring in 1981. Zam's dad is the highly successful high school basketball coach at Calhoun County High School. They have won six state titles and 17 consecutive regional championships.

Branden Conrad is the son of Robert Conrad. As a Clemson student-athlete, majoring in history and playing basketball, Robert Conrad was an Academic All- American, a Rhodes Scholarship candidate and a Norris Medal recipient. He won an NCAA postgraduate scholarship and was the ACC's top all-around student-athlete. After playing basketball for the Tigers he later earned a law degree from Virginia.

Trevor Deloach's mother, Phyllis Deloach was an outstanding basketball player in her day. She lost her right hand going into her senior year (car accident), but went on to make all-state her senior year. She played one year at Anderson College.

Mike Holmes' sister, Patrice, played college basketball at Middle Tennessee State. She was a recently named to the Sun Belt Conference all-time women's basketball team after she was a three-time All-Sun Belt pick and three-time Sun Belt Tournament Most Outstanding Player. She led the Lady Raiders to first-round NCAA Tournament victories in 2004 and '05.

Lastly, Dwayne Day and the Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard are cousins and played on the same national champion AAU team in high school.

On the coaching front, Dave Odom's son Ryan is an assistant coach at Virginia Tech. USC assistant coach Barry Sanderson's brother is Scott Sanderson, the head coach at Lipscomb. They are both the son of Wimp Sanderson, a former Alabama head coach. Graduate Assistant Steve Portland is the son of former Penn State women's head basketball coach Rene Portland.

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