USC Men's Basketball

Two South Carolina basketball signees ranked among nation’s top 150 players

Why did Jalyn McCreary commit to South Carolina? He likes ‘tough love’ coaching

South Carolina basketball commitment Jalyn McCreary talks Gamecocks, Frank Martin and what he can bring to USC.
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South Carolina basketball commitment Jalyn McCreary talks Gamecocks, Frank Martin and what he can bring to USC.

For only the third time since Rivals started such a list, South Carolina has two signed basketball recruits among the national site’s final ranking of top 150 players.

Jalyn McCreary is the country’s No. 133 player in the 2019 class and Trae Hannibal is No. 146, according to the rankings released Tuesday.

Rivals began its “Top 150” rankings in 2003. USC that year had No. 92 Renaldo Balkman and No. 101 Brandon Wallace. In 2014, signed Gamecocks Marcus Stroman (94) and TeMarcus Blanton (135) made the list.

McCreary is a 6-foot-8, 220-pound forward from Georgia who spent last season at Legacy Early College in Greenville. He’s a three-star prospect.

“(McCreary) found a great fit — both ways around, for the program and for the prospect,” Rivals analyst Corey Evans told The State last month. “He’s a hard nose, tough, versatile prospect who can play the three or the four. Had a really, really good senior year with Legacy Charter there in South Carolina. He really came on towards the end.”

McCreary is ranked No. 228 by 247Sports.

Hannibal is 6-foot-2, 200-pound point guard from Hartsville. He’s a three-star prospect who averaged 27 points, eight rebounds and four assists as a senior.

“Hannibal’s an in-state guy, is gonna want to play for the program, play hard,” Evans said. “He’s tough as nails. He scores the ball, but I think he can be a facilitator type as well. I think Trae’s really going to help that program out.”

Hannibal is ranked No. 208 by 247Sports.

Northeast big man Wildens Leveque and California wing Trey Anderson are the other member of USC’s ‘19 class.

South Carolina’s class is ranked No. 44 by Rivals and ninth in the SEC.

Clemson also has two recruits in the top 150 — No. 102 Chase Hunter, No. 144 Al-Amir Dawes.

State products to make the list include Tennessee-bound Josiah James (18), Georgia-bound Christian Brown and Alabama-bound Juwan Gary (98).

All-time South Carolina recruits ranked in Rivals Top 150

2019 class — Jalyn McCreary (133), Trae Hannibal (146)

2017 — David Beatty (149)

2016 — Sede Keita (90)

2015 — PJ Dozier (37)

2014 — Marcus Stroman (94), TeMarcus Blanton (135)

2013 — Sindarius Thornwell (43)

2011 — Damien Leonard (85)

2010 — Damontre Harris (64)

2003 — Renaldo Balkman (92), Brandon Wallace (101)

Andrew Ramspacher has been covering college athletics since 2010, serving as The State’s USC men’s basketball beat writer since October 2017. His work has been recognized by the Associated Press Sports Editors, Virginia Press Association and West Virginia Press Association. At a program-listed 5-foot-10, he’s always been destined to write about the game. Not play it.


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