Phillip looks to toughen up USC backcourt

April 20, 2012 

Tarik Phillip

South Carolina's backcourt of the future likely will be filled by a pair of good friends who learned their craft in the parks and gyms of New York City.

6-foot-5 Thaddeus Hall and 6-foot-3 Tarik Phillip of Brooklyn commited to the Gamecocks Thursday and Friday, respectively. The two are close and plan to bring a New York City kind of toughness to Frank Martin's program.

Phillip attends a prep school in Charlotte and is considered one of the top point guards available for the spring signing period. He chose USC over Mississippi State, Colorado and Tulane.

"I know Coach Martin brings in good players," Phillip said. "He did it at Kansas State and I'm pretty sure he will do it here."

Phillip averaged 26 points and 7 assists per game this past season.

"I'm a pretty decent outside shooter," he said. "I'm a pretty solid defender. I think that's something they lacked last year in the backcourt. And I'm good at getting steaks and getting out on the break."

Phillip will sign his letter of intent with USC on Monday.

The Gamecocks now have five players signed for the 2012 class with one more scholarship available.

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