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Cinco de Starters-o: South Carolina Gamecocks

Time to bust out your finest double-entendre T-shirt folks, because the ‘Cocks are in town. Oh, I can see those crazy collegians now, with their oversexed personalities and North Face jackets. It says “Beat the Cocks.” Get it?

Regardless of the attire and signage of our future leaders, the ‘Cats better put on their ‘Cock-stompin’ boots tomorrow, because Darrin Horn’s squad boasts one of the league’s top backcourts. Carolina is coming off three straight wins, including a buzzer-beating thriller over Florida. They started conference play 1-2, after early losses at UT and LSU. This group can play, and if UK is as lax covering the three and rebounding as they were against the Rebs, then bad things will happen.

Here are a bunch of ‘Cocks:

#21 Dominique Archie, 6’7”, F, Junior

2008-09 Stats: 11.5 ppg, 6.8 rpg

Dominique Archie

Archie provides both size and athleticism in the post, and he’s adept at scoring both inside and out. He’s shooting almost 40% from three, including a 3-4 effort against Vandy on Wednesday. He had his season high of 19 in the loss to Tennessee, and he scored 17 in another losing effort at LSU. Archie also has three double-doubles this season, two of those came in losses. Maybe the key for UK is to get this guy going.

#24 Mike Holmes, 6’7”, F/C Sophomore

2008-09 Stats: 11 ppg, 8.1 rpg

Mike Holmes

Well he sure looks like a happy fellow! Holmes is a good scorer and rebounder, as evidenced by his statistical data. He’s had four double-doubles this year, and he had 16 and 10 against the ‘Cats last year as a freshman. Payback time, Holmes. Oh man that was hardcore. I didn’t even plan that.

#44 Sam Muldrow, 6’9”, F, Sophomore

2008-09 Stats: 5 ppg, 3.5 rpg

Sam Muldrow

Muldrow will get the nod tomorrow, I guess, unless the ‘Cocks decide to go small. Well that wasn’t intentional. Anyway, he didn’t play at all during the first half of the season due to academic issues and a sprained elbow. If I were him, I’d argue that my academic issues were a result of a sprained elbow. He usually only gets about 20 minutes a game, but he’s started the last three, so I assume he’ll go again.

#2 Devan Downey, 5’9”, G, Junior

2008-09 Stats: 19.6 ppg, 4.3 apg

Devan Downey

You know, I thought we were done with the whole “awesome USC guard” thing once Tre Kelly left. Now Downey, who’s coming off an All-SEC year, is blossoming into one of the nation’s finest guards. He was an All Big East rookie performer his freshman year at Cincy, and I wish he still played there. Hopefully we can keep him under 20 tomorrow, or we’ll be in real trouble.

#20 Zam Fredrick, 6’0”, G, Senior

2008-09 Stats: 15.6 ppg, 2.9 rpg

Zam Fredrick

Fredrick was recruited as a shooter, and he hasn’t disappointed, especially in his last two seasons. He’s struggled over his last two, though, averaging only 10 a game and shooting only 2-8 from three. He had 27 in a win over Auburn, and his containment, or lack of, is also important.

Key Reserves:

Evaldas Baniulis, F, Junior: Hyped as the Lithuanian Ryan Stack. So far, he’s lived up to billing.

Brandis Raley-Ross, G, Junior: He has a girly name, all the way down to the hyphen.

This game and the next one at Florida will show us how good the Gamecocks are…3 p.m. on Raycom

Article written by Evan Hilbert