To be honest, I thought everything this week went according to plan. No surprises.
With Bryant out of the lineup in the Auburn game, I would have been happy if the Gamecocks just competed. And they did... until midway through the second half when Auburn pulled away and didn’t look back.
The Vanderbilt game was a confidence booster, but we can’t look too much into that dub putting into consideration just how bad they are.
Individual performances wise, no one blew me away. Either players disappointed me or moderately impressed me.
Despite that, I still have three guys to talk about. Let’s go!
Player of the Week: Justin Minaya
Once again, a former “player to watch” found their way into this category.
Minaya was by far the most consistent player between the two games played putting up 14 in both contests.
He didn’t kill it from three-point range per usual, but he did continue to impress defensively racking up three steals and a block over the last week.
Rebounds continue to find his hands as well.
His shooting percentage could be a little higher, but Minaya has been one of USC’s most dependent scorers, and for that, I found him deserving of this spot.
Runner-up: Jermaine Couisnard
Listen, I know his performance against Vandy was a little bit of a letdown, but he does so much more for this team than what goes on the stat sheet.
When he scores, great. When he doesn’t, he plays the game at the tempo Frank Martin looks for. In the coach’s words: “(Couisnard’s) given us an aggression at the guard spot that we’ve been fighting to look for all year.”
Couisnard demands respect from opposing defenses and creates chances for other players on this team.
In the Auburn game, he did actually play well putting up 16 points on 50% shooting. Against Vanderbilt, he simply didn’t get many chances, shooting only three shots in 18 minutes.
Game flow did have a big part too, though, as the game’s result was known in no time.
So, yes, his stats were down, but he still continues to do so much and I had to give this slot to him.
Player to Watch: Alanzo Frink
We finally have a Frink sighting!
In the midst of a mainly disappointing season, he finally got some garbage time minutes in the team’s blowout of Vanderbilt. And he definitely made the most of them.
The man averages a heaping 5.6 PPG and managed to drop 13 while shooting 4-of-5 from the field.
Frink’s defense was also respectable.
The thing is, he’s out of the rotation. Do I think he will turn into a star and be a regular on this column? No, but he deserved the recognition for his play this week.