South Carolina makes the list of Athlon’s Top 40 Football-Basketball Coaching Duos in college athletics, but just barely.
The tandem of Will Muschamp and Frank Martin enter the list at No. 38, which ranks the Gamecocks as seventh in the Southeastern Conference. Leading the SEC was Alabama, which came in third on the list with Auburn at No. 5 and Kentucky at No. 8.
Muschamp, entering his third season at South Carolina with spring practice starting on Wednesday, brought a formerly 3-9 team to a bowl game in his first year in charge and upped his win total from six to nine in his second year as head coach of the program.
Martin took a team that hadn’t been to the NCAA Tournament since 2004 and hadn’t won a game in the Big Dance since 1973 to the Final Four last season. The Gamecocks have gotten gradually better each season under Martin and this is likely to be the first year that his team won fewer games than the previous season.
Athlon wrote about South Carolina’s coaching duo:
Muschamp has improved his reputation nationally — which wasn’t great after his struggles at Florida — by guiding South Carolina to a bowl game in 2016 and then a nine-win season in ’17. Martin broke through with a trip to the Final Four in his fifth year at South Carolina — it’s his only trip to the NCAA Tournament at the school — but the Gamecocks will miss the NCAAs this season.
The men’s basketball team, which certainly seems destined for the NIT unless it can win the SEC Tournament next week, hosts LSU for Senior Night on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. on the SEC Network. Muschamp and the football team begin spring practice on Wednesday at a time still to be announced.