South Carolina Basketball: The Gamecocks' biggest transfer portal needs this offseason

South Carolina basketball coach Lamont Paris and his staff have a couple of holes on their roster that they will hope to fill through the transfer portal.

South Carolina basketball coach Lamont Paris with guard Meechie Johnson
South Carolina basketball coach Lamont Paris with guard Meechie Johnson / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina Basketball's Offseason Transfer Portal Needs:
Size that can play above the rim

This need is a little more flexible than the Gamecocks' need for a point guard. Next year's team needs another big who can score the basketball and, probably more importantly, defend the rim.

Next year's team, barring an unforeseen exit, will still have Collin Murray-Boyles and Josh Gray as players who fit into a team's rotation of bigs well. They were the only real shot-blocking threats on the team this year. However, CMB is 6'7" and hasn't shown much offensively away from the basket (though, everyone around the program swears he can shoot), and Josh Gray is a mauler inside without much of a scoring game.

The 2024-2025 Gamecocks will need another player with real length. Carolina was 10th in the SEC in blocked shots and was the 2nd-most blocked team in the conference. Murray-Boyles and Gray accounted for nearly half of the team's blocks despite playing just 850 total minutes this year. The roster needs another player who can alter shots in the paint so USC can make sure there is always at least one rim protector on the floor.

It would be nice if the offseason addition could bring some scoring punch. BJ Mack wasn't overly efficient this season, but his ability to stretch the floor as a decent 3-point shooter and his strength inside as a post-up player created gravity around him, opening things up for his teammates at times. There is a hole on the roster for that role now.

Mack also was a severely below-the-rim player, throwing down 0 dunks all year despite standing 6'8" and playing over 800 minutes as the team's starting power forward. Moving forward, it would help having that role filled by an athletic player who can play above the rim on offense, too.

Incoming freshman Okku Federiko has displayed some of those traits at the high school level. He is 6'9" but has a 7'4" wingspan, and he is skilled enough as a ball handler and shooter to become a real scoring threat at the college level. Will he be ready to do that as a freshman?

If the coaching staff thinks Federiko is ready, then just adding another quality body down low could be what needs to be done. Federiko's older brother (named Federiko Federiko) is in the transfer portal after averaging 5.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks in two years as a Pittsburgh Panther. He does not have the same shooting range as his younger brother, but he is a 6'11" big with decent athleticism.

A player like the elder Federiko could be a fit if Okku is ready to contribute as a freshman and Collin Murray-Boyles displays the shooting touch that his coaches and teammates raved about this season.