Ranking The Best Gamecocks Men’s Basketball Teams Of The Decade

With the end of the decade right around the corner, it’s safe to say that South Carolina’s men’s basketball program has taken a turn for the better.

South Carolina has had a historic decade, having some of the best seasons the program has ever had, producing some one the best talent, and making a historic run during March Madness.

That being said, here are the best of the best from 2010-2019:

10) 2011-12

South Carolina was coming to the end of the Darrin Horn tenure as he had been there for nearly five seasons.

This season did not have many ups as the teams record was 10-21.

The teams leading scorer was Malik Cook, who only averaged 12 points per game.

This season was one for Gamecock fans to forget as some of the only wins South Carolina earned were against terrible schools such as South Carolina-Upstate, Presbyterian College, and South Carolina State.

9) 2013-14

South Carolina only ranked above Mississippi State in SEC ranking this season with a conference record of 5-13 and a regular season record of 14-20.

This was only Frank Martins second season as he didn’t have much to work with.

However, this was the year South Carolina recruited four star recruit Sindarius Thornwell to Columbia.

This seasons highlights included defeating 17th ranked Kentucky and going to the Quarterfinals in the SEC tournament. 

8) 2012-13

Frank Martins first season was certainly a tough one for previous Kansas State coach.

South Carolina’s win percentage was amongst the lowest in the SEC.

Not much to say about this season except Martin was put into a tough situation.

7) 2010-11

The Gamecocks went 14-16 this season as previous coach, Darrin Horn’s time in Columbia was coming to an end.

The team had A BUNCH of forwards on their roster making their lineups wing-heavy.

The roster included three players averaging double digits point, including two South Carolina native, Bruce Ellington and Sam Muldrow.

The roster had three players who were ranked within their classes top-100 players.

This team had ranked a decent 10th in points per game in their conference.

This was a slight glimmer of hope for fans that liked Darrin Horn but that hope was extinguished followed by his final season. 

6) 2017-18

After losing Sindarius Thornwell and PJ Dozier, South Carolina tried to remind fans of the organizations ability to win.

Their win percentage was a little over .500, which makes this team seem as if they were decent, but in reality, in conference play, they were lackluster only winning 7 of the 11 matchups.

The season was mediocre at best and should be forgotten.

5) 2018-19

Last years hope relied on South Carolina favorite, Chris SIlva.

Silva was a senior and was preparing to make an attempt to go to the NBA (where he is prospering on a good Miami Heat team).

Freshman, AJ Lawson ended the season averaging 13 points, shooting nearly 40% from behind the arch.

Lawson became a part of the SEC All-Freshman team that year.

The team fell to Arkansas in the SEC tournament and finished fifth in the league.

T-3) 2019-20 

Although it’s still early in the season, South Carolina seems to be on a good pace.

With a record of 8-5 come New Years, the Gamecocks seem to be competitive as of this season.

Toronto native, AJ Lawson is producing high levels of offense with 16 points and nearly three assists a game.

The Gamecocks defeated 9th ranked Virginia which is quite a feat to do in John Paul Jones Arena.

This team has talent and can do damage if they stay consistent.

T-3) 2014-15

This season wasn’t particularly spectacular as the Gamecocks went 17-16.

South Carolina had acquired a four star recruit and three-three stars to add to their improving roster.

This season was right before the much improved, NIT competing, 2015-16 team.

The Gamecocks did well, considering their strength-of-schedule was a 8.2, where 0 is average.  

2) 2015-16

PJ Dozier was a five star recruit according to most major recruiting services and served as a great addition to Frank Martin’s squad.

South Carolina went undefeated in non-conference games throughout the entire season, with a 11-7 in the conference.

The Gamecocks had placed into the National Invitation Tournament (NIT), where they lost in the second round to Georgia Tech. 

1) 2016-17

This is a no-brainer.

Despite a strength-of-schedule at 17.52, the Gamecocks had a historic season.

Sindarius Thornwell led the team with 21 points and seven rebounds with a cast of role players coming off the bench to help him.

South Carolina upset Marquette in the NCAA tournament, followed by a massive upset against 2nd in the East ranked Duke in the second round.

The Gamecocks cinderella story didn’t end in the second round as they continued to upset 3rd and 4th in the East, Baylor and Florida at Madison Square Garden.

The Gamecocks had their first appearance in the Final Four against Gonzaga which they fought fiercely.

Gonzaga narrowly came on top with South Carolina losing by four.

So much more can be, and has been written about this team, but this was historic for the program and is cemented in University of South Carolina history.

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