South Carolina Basketball: 3 thumbs up, 3 thumbs down from the Gamecocks' win over Mississippi State

South Carolina basketball set a new record for regular season wins on Saturday when they knocked off the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the regular season finale.

South Carolina basketball forward BJ Mack
South Carolina basketball forward BJ Mack / Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports
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South Carolina Basketball vs. Mississippi State Bulldogs
Thumbs Down 1: Rebounding

The Gamecocks outrebounded Mississippi State in their first meeting at the beginning on the SEC season, but that did not happen again on Saturday.

MSU pulled down 7 more rebounds than South Carolina did, and the Bulldogs' starting three front court players combined for 29 boards. That was more than double the total the Gamecocks' starters got (Zach Davis, BJ Mack, and Collin Murray-Boyles combined for 14 rebounds, with CMB getting 8 of them).

The Gamecocks allowed the Bulldogs to get 16 offensive rebounds and 15 2nd chance points. Those numbers will need to improve before the NCAA Tournament, or else USC won't play very long into March.

South Carolina Basketball vs. Mississippi State
Thumbs Down 2: Bench Struggles

Lamont Paris didn't get as much as he hoped to get out of his bench against Mississippi State. Josh Gray had a pretty good showing on defense, and Myles Stute knocked down two 3-pointers, but after that, the bench was not very impactful.

For the game, the Carolina bench scored just 13 points. The reserves shot 4-15 from the field and committed half of the team's turnovers despite playing significantly fewer minutes than the starters.

South Carolina Basketball vs. Mississippi State
Thumbs Down 3: Fouls

The Gamecocks got to the line for 24 foul shots, but they allowed MSU to shoot 25 of them.

Some of the team's 20 fouls were at the worst time, as well. Jacobi Wright and Ta'Lon Cooper converged on Dashawn Davis for a foul at the end of regulation, allowing the guard to tie the score with two free throws just before time expired. Then, at the end of overtime, Zach Davis fouled Josh Hubbard on a 3-pointer. Had he made all three shots instead of just two, the game likely would have gone to a 2nd overtime.

Carolina will need to keep their hands to themselves in the SEC Tournament if they have plans to win in Nashville.

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