USC basketball coach Frank Martin will have some holes to fill on his roster for next season, and one spot was taken on Saturday when 6-2 guard Chico Carter Jr. announced he will transfer from Murray State. Carter prepped at Cardinal Newman and signed with the Racers in 2019.
“A lot of schools reached out to me and wanted me to come to their program, and one of them was South Carolina,” Carter said. “Of course, I’m from Columbia and that attracted my attention a lot. Their staff has recruited me since high school, and coming out of the Transfer Portal, it’s all about finding the best fit for you at your next school, and I feel South Carolina is going to give me the best opportunity to fulfill my goals.”
At the time he signed with Murray State, Carter had not been offered by Martin though he was scouted by the Gamecocks. His other offers included Hampton, High Point, Youngstown State, Winthrop, Saint Louis, North Carolina A&T, Elon, Arkansas State, Charlotte and College of Charleston.
“I really feel like everything happens for a reason,” Carter said. “I feel like me going to Murray State helped me evolve my game, help me learn more about what I need to tweak and what my weaknesses are and my strengths as well.”
Carter played in 48 games in his two seasons at Murray State. This past season he averaged 13 points per game and displayed his outside shooting skills. He made 44% of his three point shots and 51% of his overall attempts. He also knocked down 81% of his free throws.
“Coach Martin was telling me I was going to be the point guard on the team,” Carter said. “Come in and have two years of experience at Murray State and come in and be that point guard and show my abilities that I have on the court and be able to get some wins.”
It appears Martin will return for a 10th season with the Gamecocks after some members of the board of trustees, under pressure from some state senators, put a stop to school President Bob Caslen’s plans to make a change.
“We really didn’t talk about that,” Carter said. “We just talked about my opportunity coming to USC.”
The Gamecocks are facing a major remake of their roster at this point. Guards Trae Hannibal and TJ Moss and forward Jalyn McCreary are in the Transfer Portal, and guard Jermaine Couisnard and forward Keyshawn Bryant have declared for the NBA Draft but will not sign with agents.
Carter played two seasons at Murray State, but with the NCAA granting players a free season, he could have up to three years of eligibility with the Gamecocks. Carter is already back in Columbia having finished up at Murray and plans to enroll this summer.