It’s time to crank up hoops season in South Carolina. This is the week for exhibition games and Clemson plays its tonight at home at the newly refurbished Littlejohn Coliseum. The Tigers face Lander at 7:00 PM while USC takes on Newberry Sunday afternoon at 4:30 at Colonial Life Arena.
Clemson returns three starters and nine lettermen off the 2015-16 team that went 17-14 overall and 10-8 in the ACC. Included in the list of returning starters is first-team All-ACC forward Jaron Blossomgame, who was third in the league in scoring at 18.7 points per game last season. Donte Grantham (10.2 points per game) and Avry Holmes (10.0) also return as double-figure scorers for Brad Brownell’s program.
Lander was 22-10 overall last season, 13-6 in the Peach Belt Conference. JR Washington returns as the Bearcats’ leading scorer after averaging 19.6 points per game last season.
The Gamecocks were an NIT team last season just missing out on their first NCAA Tournament bid under Frank Martin. The Gamecocks lost three starters and seven contributors overall from that team but return a stalwart backcourt of Sindarius Thornwell, Duane Notice and PJ Dozier.
Thursday Martin briefed the media on his team’s progress:
Don’t tell Martin they don’t play uptempo: