Frank Martin says Wofford opener was ‘the right decision’


COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina men’s basketball begins its 110th season on Friday when it travels to face Wofford in the newly constructed Jerry Richardson Indoor Stadium in Spartanburg. Tip time is set for 7 p.m. ET.

This is the first time South Carolina is starting the season on the road since the 2005-06 campaign.

Gamecocks men’s basketball coach Frank Martin joked that he has not had a drink in about 11 years and said he’s been struggling the past few days preparing for the opener against Wofford.  The team will open the regular season against Wofford, a decision Martin believed was good for the team despite any concerns. Martin believes the game against Wofford on Friday will be a challenge for his young team. He described the Terriers as a “good basketball team.”

“It would be pretty selfish on my part, if I didn’t sign up to do this to show our state and show the country just what a real good basketball coach Mike Young is,” Martin said.

During the weekly press conference, Martin also addressed local media coverage, his excitement over the team and the growth needed as the team moves forward. Martin said he used exhibition games against Virginia Tech and Erskine to learn more about his team, especially the freshman players. Martin said he believes his young players responded the right way in those games. The Gamecocks have five freshmen and five sophomores on the team this year.

“I could have nine seniors , and I’d have concerns going into the season. That doesn’t change the optimism that I have for our team,” Martin said.

South Carolina was defeated 86-67 by Virginia Tech Sunday and defeated Erskine 85-44 on October 30. Beginning with Friday’s matchup at Wofford, the Gamecocks will continue to play five games over the course of a 10-day span.