Frank Martin and South Carolina got some good news on Thursday evening from Mark Alstork. The graduate transfer guard has completed all of his official visits and has released a top four of South Carolina, Illinois, LSU, and Pittsburgh.
Wherever Alstork goes, he will be eligible to play immediately. Along with the four finalists, he also visited Louisiville (on an unofficial visit), but that’s all it turned out to be as it appears Rick Pitino will not land his services for the 2017-18 season.
Alstork caught up with Phil Kornblut earlier to break down his decision and to detail what he was looking for in his final destination.
“It’s more about people who really came and looked me in my face to sell me a dream...People who are very truthful and real in their worlds, and very heartfelt. It’s going to be very hard, it’s going to be very hard. I have to make a decision but I’m very grateful and thankful for each and every one of them for giving me an opportunity because this is an opportunity I couldn’t dream about.”
Martin will have to go up against a current conference foe in LSU, one of his coaching proteges in Brad Underwood at Illinois, and a former conference colleague in Kevin Stallings at Pitt. While the Gamecocks hold a trump card and a strong selling point that the other three schools don’t have - a Final Four appearance this past season - we’ll have to wait and see if that will be the tipping point in getting what will be a key piece to a potential second straight deep tournament run in place.