SEC School Nabs Big Man

Sam Muldrow may not be a household name on the national level, but his recruitment was starting to pick up steam. He put up 19 points and 10 boards at the Albert Schweitzer Games and people were starting to take notice. However, it's too late as the 6-foot-9 big man made a pledge on Tuesday.

The knock on Dave Odom and the South Carolina program a year ago was its inability to keep top kids home. That's history after the Gamecocks reeled in yet another of the state's top players.

This time it was 6-foot-9, 205-pound rising senior Sam Muldrow of Wilson High (S.C.), who committed to Odom and his staff on Tuesday.

``South Carolina was involved all along," Wilson coach Bob Wilson said. "His cousin is Carlos Powell, who graduated two years ago, so he's been going to USC games to watch his cousin play. They've known about Sam for a while now."

However, Muldrow is still somewhat of an unknown despite faring exceptionally well at the Albert Schweitzer Games in Germany.

``It was one of those situations where he went in with little expectations and they took him more on potential, but every time they put him in, they got results," Wilson said. "He had some really good games."

Like the 19 points and 10 boards he put up against Israel.

``He's long, blocks a lot of shots and rebounds well," Wilson added. "He's a true low-post player. He's just got to put some weight on him."

Muldrow, who averaged 23 points, 13 boards and 6 blocks per game as a junior, was also heavily pursued by the College of Charleston prior to the recent firing of Tom Herrion.

``Coach Odom and his staff did a great job sitting down with Sam and telling him what he needs to do academically," Wilson said. "They showed as much concern about him off the court than on it and showed him that they are really interested in him as a person. That meant a lot to Sam and his mother."

The addition of Muldrow gives the Gamecocks three players in the Class of 2007 that all hail from South Carolina: highly touted forward Mike Holmes (Lee Central High), fellow forward Aaron Ellis of Carolina Forest High and Muldrow.

Odom has also added transfer guards Devan Downey and Zam Fredrick, who are both from the state.

``It's very exciting," Wilson said of the recent trend of players remaining in the state. "I'm happy they want to be part of that and I'm hoping it continues and more of the best players stick around."

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