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Lamont Paris named to prestigious Coach of the Year award watch list

Another honor has been given to South Carolina men’s basketball. It’s not a weekly nod, or something given to the Gamecocks, but rather for their head coach.

Lamont Paris was named to the Naismith College Coach of the Year Watch List on Friday afternoon. The prestigious award is given to the most outstanding men’s and women’s basketball coaches in collegiate athletics in any given season.

Paris has led South Carolina to its AP Top 25 ranking in seven years, reaching as high as No. 11 and currently at No. 20. The Gamecocks are tied for third in the SEC standings with Auburn. In his second season at USC, he’s nearly doubled his win total (21-5) from his debut season (11-21) and has been on pace to be a top candidate for the SEC Coach of the Year award in March.

South Carolina women’s basketball head coach Dawn Staley has won the award for the women’s programs three times (2019-20, 2021-22 and 2022-23). USC has never had a men’s head coach win the award.