The University of South Carolina men’s basketball team is now in its second week of practicing in preparation for its 2020-2021 season. Junior forwards Keyshawn Bryant and Alanzo Frink spoke with the media today about how they have been preparing for a season unlike any other during a semester unlike any other.
“I’ve just focused on getting myself back in shape and working on my jump shot,” Bryant said.
Frink said he focused on fundamentals during his time away from Columbia and has been “just working on [his] footwork, just trying to score around the rim.”
The two players are program veterans for the Gamecocks, who are coming off an 18-13 (10-8 SEC) 2019-2020 season that was cut short just before the beginning of the 2020 SEC Men’s Basketball Tournament. The two said they are looking forward to proving themselves with a team that has grown together over the past couple seasons under the leadership of head coach Frank Martin.
“The vibe is great,” Bryant said. “We’re an experienced team, so that’s a plus, and, you know, right now we're just trying to focus on putting this back together and getting the season back started.”
Both players also expressed feelings of responsibility to become leaders for the team that is now looking to them for direction.
“It’s a good thing because I feel like a lot of people now, like my team trusts me since I’ve been here for two years and I’ve been around Maik [Kotsar] and Chris [Silva],” Frink said.
Another topic of discussion was the new additions to the team, including the freshman class and redshirt senior Seventh Woods, who transferred from the University of North Carolina last year and is now eligible to play.
Bryant said Woods will most notably bring experience from his part in North Carolina’s 2017 National Championship victory and a basketball IQ on par with his point guard abilities.
According to Frink, the whole team has been impressive during preseason practices.
“Now everybody’s more athletic, everybody’s stronger, so I feel like everybody is going to impress during the games,” Frink said.
His sentiments were echoed by his frontcourt teammate, Bryant.
“I think everybody has improved their game in a big way. You’d be surprised by a lot of guys on the team,” Bryant said.