South Carolina Basketball: 3 thumbs up, 3 thumbs down from domination of Kentucky

South Carolina basketball dismantled the Kentucky Wildcats to remain the country's only undefeated team.

South Carolina basketball forward Ashlyn Watkins dunking against Kentucky
South Carolina basketball forward Ashlyn Watkins dunking against Kentucky / Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina Basketball vs. Kentucky Wildcats
Thumbs Down 1: Sloppiness with the Ball

As the game started to get out of hand, Kentucky's defensive intensity faltered, causing this number to stop growing until garbage time, but the Wildcats forced a lot of turnovers from the Gamecocks early. 5 turnovers in the 1st quarter came almost exclusively off of bad passes. The giveaways kept the offense to just 17 points in the period. They cleaned things up a bit (just 4 more turnovers until garbage time in the 4th quarter), but the sloppy passing and less-than-crisp decision-making must improve.

South Carolina Basketball vs. Kentucky Wildcats
Thumbs Down 2: Free Throws

A bit of a nitpicky thumbs down from Monday night's game was the Gamecocks' free throw shooting. They shot under 70% from the line (not good enough), but they also didn't make it to the charity stripe enough. 12 free throw attempts against a team they were physically dominating was surprising, especially considering multiple of those trips to the foul line came as a result of fouls after offensive rebounds.

South Carolina Basketball vs. Kentucky Wildcats
Thumbs Down 3: Too Many Midrange Shots

There are a few Gamecocks who like to take shots from midrange. That isn't great for efficiency as the best shots in basketball are open 3-pointers and shots at the rim. With 68 shots from the field, 17 were from the perimeter and 35 were at the rim. That means Carolina took 16 shots from midrange in the game.

Taking open middies isn't a death sentence to an offense, but several of those shots on Monday came from pull-ups and/or in situations in which another dribble or two would have resulted in a layup. It is not a massive issue, but it is one that can be tweaked to help the offense out a little.

Next. South Carolina Basketball: Gamecocks to play on College GameDay against LSU. South Carolina Basketball: Gamecocks to play on College GameDay against LSU. dark