South Carolina Basketball: 5 March Madness storylines to watch for the Gamecocks

There will be a lot of storylines that South Carolina basketball fans will be watching during this NCAA Tournament.

South Carolina basketball guard Meechie Johnson
South Carolina basketball guard Meechie Johnson / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina Basketball's 5 March Madness Storylines
Slow and steady wins the race

All year, Lamont Paris has made this team's identity one that focuses on playing at the pace that best suits them. Typically, that means the Gamecocks play a slow, methodical offense that allows them to be 100% dialed in on the defensive end of the court. The slower style helps eliminate big mistakes, allows for more starter minutes to hide the depth issue, and throws other teams off of their usual rhythms.

South Carolina is capable of winning faster-paced games (they beat Florida recently in a game in which they had to score in the 80s, and they beat Mississippi State in a game in which they scored in the 90s in overtime). However, most of the time, when the opponent dictates a faster pace, the Gamecocks struggle. Both games against Auburn and the road loss to Alabama were examples of this.

Carolina must play "Gamecock basketball" to perform well in the Big Dance, especially in the 1st round against Oregon. The Ducks don't often play fast, but they are capable of attacking in transition, something that the Gamecocks have tended to counter by increasing their own pace (often to poor results).

A slower pace also should allow for better contributions from banged-up players like Ta'Lon Cooper (ankle) and Myles Stute (knee, hip). BJ Mack is not an up-and-down-the-floor type of player, either, and the Gamecocks will need him to be able to score the basketball to win.

Next. South Carolina Basketball: Gamecocks to give fans behind-the-scenes access during NCAA Tournament run. South Carolina Basketball: Gamecocks to give fans behind-the-scenes access during NCAA Tournament run. dark