South Carolina will play LaSalle in the first round of the Charleston Classic, we are hearing.
USC’s second-round opponent will then either be South Florida or Davidson.
The field for the event, which will be held at College of Charleston’s new arena from Nov. 19-22, was released a couple months ago. But the bracket is due to be announced later today.
The rest of the field includes Miami, Penn State, UNC Wilmington and Tulane. So the Gamecocks will finish off the tournament by playing one of those teams.
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LaSalle went 18-13 last year, and 9-7 in the Atlantic 10 conference. The Explorers, whose coach John Giannini is entering his sixth season, are due to have a senior-laden team that will be picked to finish in the upper part of the A-10.
Whoever USC gets in the second round could be really intriguing. Davidson would be a rematch of the first-round NIT game in March – although the Wildcats will be much different without Stephen Curry.
Meantime, South Florida, with former Arkansas coach Stan Heath entering his third year, is a bottom-tier Big East team.
In other scheduling news, the game against Baylor will be on Jan. 2 (the same date as last year). We also know that USC will visit Furman on Dec. 19. The other nonconference dates - at Clemson, home against Western Kentucky, Furman and Richmond - have yet to be announced.
There are also five remaining nonconference opponents to be revealed.