Before he began his career as a starting guard for the Keenan Raiders, Marcus Stroman told his coach that he wanted to be a Gamecock.
“I told him that he could make that happen if he’d just work,” Raiders coach Zack Norris said.
On Thursday, Stroman fulfilled his coach’s prophecy, signing a National Letter of Intent with South Carolina in a ceremony at his high school.
“It feels great,” Stroman said. “It’s my dream finally come true.”
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As a lifelong fan of Gamecocks basketball, Stroman said USC has been his first choice, and he looks forward to playing in front of a hometown crowd in 2014. He added that coach Frank Martin’s coaching style also was a positive.
“It’s a good fit for Marcus, I think he made an excellent decision,” Norris said. “(Martin) lets his guards play. It’s pretty much how we play.
Stroman and Norris see a bright future for the hometown star.
“I know he’s going to play. He’s the type of kid he’s going to take a job,” Norris said of Stroman, who served as the sixth man in the team’s championship game as an eighth grader in 2009.
“He’s a pass-first kind of kid, but he can take over the game if he wants to.”
The 6-foot-3 guard had committed to USC in the summer of 2012 before going on to lead the Raiders to the Class 3A semifinals. Stroman posted 16 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and three steals per game in his second season as a starter for the Raiders.
“It’s been a good ride,” Norris said. “It’ll be great to see him play and watch him still mature on that level.”
Though the decision had always been made in his mind, Stroman is happy to have made it official.
“Now I don’t have to worry about impressing other schools, I just have to take care of my team,” Stroman said. “I’m going to help my team win the championship this year, and when I’m with South Carolina, we’re going to challenge for an SEC championship.”
Rivals rates Stroman a four-star prospect and the No. 83 player in the nation.
Guard TeMarcus Blanton of Locust Grove, Ga., is expected to sign his letter of intent with the Gamecocks on Friday.