Frank Martins fear on Monday was confirmed on Tuesday. Freshman guard/forward Shamiek Sheppard tore his right ACL in workouts last week and is expected to miss the 2014-15 season.
We feel awful for Shamiek with his injury," Martin said in a statement. "He has worked so hard to put himself in position to play at South Carolina. We look forward to supporting him through his surgery and rehab this season."
Sheppard will undergo surgery this week.
The power guard from Brooklyn faces a redshirt year while USC is staring at losing a quarter of its recruiting class before the season ever begins, with another quarter a mystery. James Thompson does not have a resolution to his legal woes, meaning the 6-foot-9 signee has no answer to his future at USC. With the 6-6 Sheppard also out, the Gamecocks post presence is taking a severe hit.
USC was bullied in the SEC paint last season. While the Gamecocks have some height Laimonas Chatkevicius stands 6-11, Demetrius Henry is 6-9 and Mindaugas Kacinas is 6-7 USC lacks the bulk to hold its own with some of the leagues other big bodies. Chatkevicius can get work done at 250 pounds, but Henry is a slight 215 and Kacinas is 210. Desmond Ringer (6-9, 255) transferred to Mercer and USCs tallest remaining players are 6-6 Reggie Theus (11 games, 3.5 minutes last year), 6-5 Michael Carrera, 6-5 guard Brian Steele and 6-5 guard Sindarius Thornwell.
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