South Carolina Basketball: Gamecock transfer target makes commitment announcement

After rumors of a visit to Columbia next week, South Carolina basketball target Kiki Iriafen chose the "other USC."
South Carolina basketball transfer portal target Kiki Iriafen
South Carolina basketball transfer portal target Kiki Iriafen / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, South Carolina basketball coach Dawn Staley sent the women's college basketball internet world into a frenzy. After rumors circulated that star Stanford Cardinal transfer forward Kiki Iriafen was planning to visit Columbia next week, Staley posted a picture of herself with a look on her face that seemed to serve as confirmation of the rumors.

News broke late on Saturday night, though, that seems as if it might end those conversations between Iriafen and the Gamecocks.

According to a report from ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski (yes, that Woj), Iriafen informed ESPN that she was committing to USC...the "other USC." Iriafen is planning to spend her final year of college eligibility staying on the West Coast to play for the Southern Cal Trojans.

It is important to note that nothing has been made official yet between Iriafen and Southern Cal, though, that feels like a formality at this point as she made her commitment known to ESPN. Southern Cal's push for the pledge before South Carolina was able to get her on campus might have been the difference in the transfer portal recruitment.

Most likely missing out on Iriafen is far from a death sentence for Dawn Staley's South Carolina basketball squad. The Gamecocks just wrapped up an undefeated national title run while only losing one rotation player as Kamilla Cardoso was picked 3rd in the WNBA Draft by the Chicago Sky.

Iriafen would have been a blessing of abundance for the 2024-2025 version of the Gamecocks, not a fulfillment of a need. The forward and center room in Columbia is still loaded with talented players like Chloe Kitts, Ashlyn Watkins, Sania Feagin, Sakima Walker, Adhel Tac, and 5-star high school national player of the year Joyce Edwards.

Iriafen's decision to play for the Trojans could mean that next season will be marked by the fact that the two USCs are the two best teams in the sport.

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