As South Carolina looks to finish well down the stretch and reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2004, ESPN’s Joe Lunardi has the Gamecocks in position to stay close to home.
His latest Bracketology projections have USC as a No. 5 seed in the West Region, drawing UNC Wilmington in the opening round in Greenville. The potential second-round opponent would be the winner of Virginia-Belmont.
This year’s NCAA Selection Show is March 12.
Greenville got first- and second-round games after the NCAA pulled out of North Carolina because of the HB2 law. It’s the first championship men’s basketball event held in the state since 2002.
UNC Wilmington, which reached the tournament last season and gave Duke a fight, is currently 21-4 and tied atop the CAA standings with College of Charleston.
▪ CBS’s Jerry Palm has the Gamecocks as a No. 6 seed facing TCU in the first round in Sacramento in the South Region. They’d match up with the winner of UCLA and Bucknell in the second round.
▪ USA Today put South Carolina as a No. 6 seed in Buffalo in the West Region, matched up against Nevada, currently 18-5 in the Mountain West. The winner of Duke-Florida Gulf Coast would await in the second round.