…and things could be going better for the Gamecocks. They’ve played six conference games so far, and have won only one, against Alabama. They’ve dropped contests against Kentucky, Vandy, Florida, Auburn, and tonight, Ole Miss.
The Cocks came out strong in the second half against Ole Miss and actually had a chance to win, but they just couldn’t quite pull it off. Even though the outcome was disappointing, it does suggest that maybe, just maybe, this team is finally going to turn a corner. They got off to a slow start and were plagued by turnovers, but USC played a decent game and never let themselves get too far out of it.
Murphy Holloway, the Rebel-turned-Gamecock-turned-Rebel-again, reminded us tonight that he would have been a quality asset to the garnet and black. Alas, it just wasn’t meant to be. He led Ole Miss with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Carolina was led by Malik Cooke, who has certainly proved his worth more than once this season. Cooke had 17 points and seven rebounds tonight.
After another loss, the question is still, “can they turn things around?” After beating the Crimson Tide on Wednesday night, it would have been great for USC to keep the positive momentum and establish a two-game winning streak. That didn’t happen, obviously, and now the team must avoid getting too discouraged and instead find a way to put more games, especially the close ones, in the win column.
Any hopes of a postseason berth are long gone, but if the Gamecocks can manage to find ways to win and finish the season with a winning record, some of the frustration with the program might cool down a little. If the Cocks finish under .500 again, though, Darrin Horn’s seat might just combust.
USC faces a tough challenge in their next game, Thursday against No. 13 Florida. The game will tip off at 9 ET and be televised on ESPN2.