South Carolina Basketball: 3 thumbs up, 3 thumbs down vs. DePaul

South Carolina basketball big man Benjamin Bosmans-Verdonk. Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports
South Carolina basketball big man Benjamin Bosmans-Verdonk. Mandatory Credit: Steve Roberts-USA TODAY Sports /
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South Carolina Basketball
South Carolina basketball starters Meechie Johnson and Josh Gray were big reasons why the Gamecocks held on to beat DePaul. Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports /

South Carolina Basketball vs. DePaul:
Thumbs Up

South Carolina Gamecocks. BENCH SPARKS . Thumbs Up. South Carolina’s bench wasn’t elite against DePaul, but the reserve unit provided some much needed sparks in the close victory. Zach Davis scored in double-figures, Josh Gray provided 8 points, 7 rebounds, a block, and a steal, and Morris Ugusuk played nice defense on the arc. After the first few minutes of the game, things were ugly for the Gamecocks, but the bench unit helped prevent a complete collapse and sustained Carolina’s perfect early-season record..

Thumbs Up. South Carolina basketball has not looked confident offensively in years. Sure, individual players like GG Jackson, Keyshawn Bryant, and Jermaine Couisnard were confident in themselves as scorers, but there has been a general lack of confidence from the garnet and black in recent seasons. So far in 2023, that hasn’t been the case, and the DePaul game was a great example of that change. Players like Meechie Johnson, Jacobi Wright, Zach Davis, and BJ Mack took (and made) some really quick, confident shots in the win. Big Josh Gray, who had looked uncomfortable in limited minutes after coming off of an illness, was strong and physical.. . South Carolina Gamecocks. CONFIDENT 'COCKS

Thumbs Up. Meechie Johnson came out with an aggressive mindset on offense. He scored 7 points early, and had he not gotten caught under the basket, he would have had 9 points in the game’s first three minutes. Johnson abused his former teammate Chico Carter when the ex-Gamecock tried to guard him, and he outscored the entire DePaul team through the game’s first 11 minutes. In the 1st half, he was responsible for 20 points (18 points scored, 2 points off of an assist). He finished the game with 24 points and an assist. He also added 5 rebounds.. . South Carolina Gamecocks. AGGRESSIVE MEECHIE JOHNSON