USC loses star forward Chris Silva after this season. Apparently, Gamecock coach Frank Martin has identified a potential replacement in 6-9 Wildens Leveque, a native of Brockton, MA who attends school in Maine. Martin first saw Leveque in action this summer and, along with assistant coach Chuck Martin, will see him again Wednesday.
Frank McGuire, back in the late 60’s, was recruiting Tom Owens for the Gamecocks when he eyed a skinny guard named John Roche. Similarly, Leveque said Martin was scouting another player when he got his first look at him.
“I out performed the other player, so they got kind of interested, so they got my number and contacted me after AAU season,” Leveque said. “I had set up an official visit for last weekend but it got canceled due to the hurricane. Frank Martin and coach Chuck (Martin) are coming on Wednesday to visit me in my school.”
Leveque already has rescheduled that official visit with the Gamecocks for October 6th, so there is strong interest both ways.
“Coach Frank Martin is similar to my AAU coach, I like the way he coaches,” Leveque said. “I like the evolution of Chris Silva, how he’s just gotten better every year and now he has a chance to play in the NBA. That gave a better idea of how the University of South Carolina is.”
Leveque said he’s watched film of the Gamecocks to learn more about Martin’s coaching style and style of play.
“I like how they’ve got their bigs running the floor, give them a break whenever they’re tired, play with a high motor. I play pretty similar,” he said. “He (Martin) is exactly like my coach, the way my coach would emphasize defense exactly. Scream at me, yell at me, bench me every time I do something wrong. Come back in and try and be better.”
Leveque averaged 15 points, 10 rebounds and 2 blocks per game. He said his playing style is exactly what Martin is looking for to replace Silva.
“They like how I run the floor, they like how I’m a high energy guy, i have a big motor,” he said. “How I can block shots, how I can finish and score and play really hard because at their level the guys play really hard.”
Leveque will take an official visit to VCU this weekend and one to Massachusetts the following weekend, and then he will visit USC. Penn State is another school he’s strongly considering and might visit there October 13th. Coaches from VCU and UMass have been in for visits.
He does plan to sign in November and does not yet have a favorite among his four schools.