Wednesday in Tuscaloosa, South Carolina lost to one of the nation’s best defensive teams, Alabama, 57-47.
The Gamecocks had not scored so few points since a 48-47 loss at Georgia in 2006.
USC's 20 turnovers tied a season high. The team's 28.6 percent shooting and eight assists were season lows.
Here are some notes from a disappointing night. Look for more analysis in tomorrow's edition of The State and on GoGamecocks.com:
Bench press: USC’s reserves accounted for nearly 60 percent of the team’s 47 points -- the first time this season the bench contributing more than half the Gamecocks’ scoring.
Malik Cooke, the transfer from Nevada, scored 11 points and nabbed three steals, both team highs. He also grabbed six rebounds, his fifth-straight game with six boards or more.
Freshman guard Eric Smith continued a string of good showings off the bench with a career-high seven points and a team-high three assists. And Ramon Galloway scored 10 points, the fifth game in the past six where he’s scored in double digits.
Not a sure shot: A game after notching a triple-double, forward Sam Muldrow got the blocks (six) and the boards (nine) but not the points (four). The reigning SEC Player of the Week went 1-for-11 – the sixth time this season he made two shots or less.
But unlike other games where he been made few buckets, Muldrow did not disappear against Alabama and forced Tide forwards JaMychal Green and Tony Mitchell to work inside at times. Consider: Muldrow’s five other games with two buckets or less, the 6-foot-9 senior averaged three rebounds and two blocks.
Low blow: The 47 points scored Wednesday were the lowest in head coach Darrin Horn’s eight years as a head coach at Western Kentucky and South Carolina. His previous low was scoring 53 points twice -- USC at Tennessee in February and Western Kentucky vs. Arkansas-Little Rock in 2004.
Paint job: USC has lost all four games this season when foes have scored 38 or more points in the paint in regulation. The Gamecocks, though, lead scoring in the paint 478-442 this season and are 9-1 when they score more inside than their opponents.
Unhappy ending: In the upset of Vanderbilt on Saturday, USC shut down the Commodores and cranked up the scoring in the second half and overtime. Against Alabama, the Gamecocks made five of its last 20 shots (20 percent) after cutting the Tide’s lead to three with 14:35 left in the game. Alabama made nine of its last 14 shots (64 percent) and won comfortably.
Few quick beginnings: USC has started 2-0 in the SEC just twice since joining the league in 1991-92. The Gamecocks did it last season and in 1996-97 when the team went 15-1 in conference play.