South Carolina senior wing Sindarius Thornwell keeps plugging along, doing everything for his team and carrying the load.
He’s getting noticed on a national level.
Thornwell was named to the Naismith Award top 30 list. The Naismith Award goes to the top player in college basketball, and 10 semifinalists will be named March 1.
This came less than a day after CBSSports’ Gary Parrish ranked Thornwell eighth in his Player of the Year rankings.
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“Thornwell got 44 points and 21 rebounds in Tuesday's game against Alabama -- an impressive performance regardless of the fact that it came in a very strange four-overtime loss,” Parrish wrote. “The senior guard is now averaging 20.4 points and 7.7 rebounds for a South Carolina team that's tied atop the SEC standings with Kentucky and Florida. The Gamecocks are 16-2 in games in which he's played.”
Thornwell leads USC in points, rebounds, assists and steals per game. He’s also been a consistent and versatile defender, even playing some center late against Alabama because of foul trouble.
Two USC women make list
A pair of Gamecocks stalwarts made a Wooden Award top 20 list. A’ja Wilson is a familiar face, having made the final five semifinalists the past two seasons. She’s joined by center Alaina Coates.
Coates is averaging 13.9 points and 11.6 rebounds a game, shooting 66 percent. Wilson is averaging 17 points, shooting 57.5 percent and blocking 2.2 shots a game.
The 15-player final ballot for the award will be revealed prior to the NCAA Tournament on March 4.