South Carolina (4-1) at Florida International (2-3)
When: 7 p.m. Monday
Where: Ocean Bank Convocation Center in Miami
KenPom prediction: South Carolina 74, Florida International 57
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TV: CBS Sports Network
Radio: 107.5 The Game
Series: South Carolina leads, 3-0
Last meeting: Dec. 4, 2016 – South Carolina won 70-54 in Columbia
Coach: Frank Martin (217-129 in 10 seasons overall; Sixth season at USC — 100-75)
Projected starters: G Hassani Gravett (9.0 ppg); G Frank Booker (10.8); G/F Justin Minaya (8.6); F Chris Silva (11.6); C Maik Kotsar (10.0)
Notes: This is USC’s first game since Nov. 19. ... The Gamecocks have had at least four double-digit scorers in four of their five games – but no USC player has scored more than 15 points in a game this season. … Booker is tied for fifth in the SEC in 3-point attempts (34). His 38.2 percentage from deep is good for 20th in the league.
Coach: Anthony Evans (152-173 in 11 seasons overall; Fifth season at FIU – 53-79)
Projected starters: G Cordell Veira (4.2), G Trejon Jacob (15.4), G Eric Lockett (16.4), F Hassan Hussein (5.0), C Elhadji Dieng (2.0)
Notes: FIU this season doesn’t return any starters from the 2016-17 team that finished 7-24. … The Panthers were picked to finish last in the preseason Conference USA poll. ... FIU’s wins this season came over Florida Memorial (NAIA) and Concordia St. Paul (NCAA Division II). The Panthers are 0-3 against Division I programs – Stetson, Elon and Milwaukee.
Despite being some 650 miles away from Colonial Life Arena, the Gamecocks should feel some comforts of home Monday evening as Miami native and FIU alumnus Frank Martin makes his return.
A pro-USC crowd should also be on hand in support of freshman Felipe Haase (Miami Christian High School) and Ibrahim Famouke Doumbia (Miami County Day).
Monday’s game ends the first of three extended layoffs for South Carolina in the non-conference season. It’s been eight days since the Gamecocks beat Western Michigan in Conway.
Will USC be rusty in Miami? Keep in mind, the Gamecocks had sluggish first half performances in two of three games in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
3. Holden’s time
A potential benefit to the eight-day break? Perhaps it got Kory Holden that much closer to 100 percent.
The junior, who had offseason knee surgery, admitted last week that he’s still getting used to heavier body weight. The dynamic scorer at Delaware flashed his potential in Conway with 11 points off the bench in the win over UTEP.