Just over a month after committing to South Carolina, 6-6 forward Michael Carrera is officially headed to the SEC school after being admitted into the 2012 class according to GamecockCentral.com.
A native of Venezuela who played for Stu Vetter at Montrose Christian in Maryland, Carrera boosts Frank Martin’s signee total for his first season in Columbia to six.
Carrera averaged 13.2 points and 12.2 rebounds per game last season, and skill-wise he’s a player who brings a great deal of effort to the table and can play either the three or the four.
“I like everything. There’s great people there. I like Coach Frank (Martin) and Coach (Matt) Figger. The first time that I went there I felt like that was the state I wanted to be in. I like the campus and my teammates. It’s where i want to be and it’s what I was looking for.”
Carrera’s decision to attend South Carolina was delayed a bit by the need to finish up some coursework, and once that was taken care of South Carolina was able to decide on his admission.
With that hurdle now cleared Carrera is officially a Gamecock, and they can definitely use him in a front court that saw both Anthony Gill and Damontre Harris leave the program at the end of the 2011-12 campaign.
But even with those two on the floor the Gamecocks struggled on the boards, as opponents were able to rebound just over 37% of their missed shots (330th nationally) per kenpom.com.
Sophomore RJ Slawson is their most experienced returnee in the front court, having averaged 17.8 minutes and 4.5 points per game last season.
Outside of Slawson however, there isn’t much for the Gamecocks to rely on when it comes to experience in the paint with redshirt sophomore Carlton Geathers out for up to six months with a knee injury.
Carrera, Laimonas Chatkevicius, Thaddeus Hall and Mindaugas Kacinas will be needed to contribute as freshmen in a league that’s gotten tougher with the arrival of Missouri and Texas A&M in addition to a few of the holdovers improving.