Paris New Gamecock Basketball Coach
The South Carolina Gamecocks parted ways with Frank Martin just over a week ago. Now the Gamecocks have his replacement, Lamont Paris.
After a very public search for their next head coach, that saw the Gamecocks miss on top target, former Arizona head coach Sean Miller, news broke late Monday that the Gamecocks had zeroed in on Paris over former star player BJ McKie.
Paris played his college basketball at College of Wooster, a division three school, where he also started his coaching career as an assistant in 1997. Paris has also had several other assistant coaching stops most notably at Wisconsin from 2010-2017 where he served under Bo Ryan and Greg Gard. Paris was an assistant on two final four teams in Madison and one of those teams reached the National Championship game in 2015 losing to Duke.
In 2017 Paris got his first crack at being a head coach when he took the job at UT Chattanooga. In his first year as coach of the Mocs his team went 10-23 overall 3-15 in the SOCON. His second year the team improved to 12-20 (7-11), year three 20-13 (10-8), and in year four 18-7 (9-7). This year, his fifth year at the helm he guided the Mocs to a 27-8 overall record and a 14-4 conference mark, winning the SOCON and taking Chattanooga to the NCAA tournament.
Paris will be tasked with turning around a Gamecock program that has made the NCAA tournament twice since 2000 and only five times since 1980.
The team at Chattanooga this year that won the Southern Conference was built through many players coming in via the transfer portal, which means Coach Paris knows how to use the portal to his advantage. This season Paris brought in a transfer from Kanas and Wright State to help lead his team to a SOCON title. We will soon know how much work Coach Paris will have to do depending on the current roster and who plans to transfer out.
Paris’ contract is reportedly going to be for 5 years and details should be made available after board approval.