Sunday, September 24

Why the 2022 South Carolina basketball team is Dawn Staley’s best

MINNEAPOLIS – The superlatives gushed out for Dawn Staley.

An acceptance of near-insurmountable pressure. Taking a No. 1 ranking and fearlessly running with it from day one to day done, which was when South Carolina (35-2) finished the job Sunday night, clinching its second national championship, defeating UConn, 64-49, inside the Target Center in Minneapolis.

From top to bottom, a roster by Staley’s own design overflowing with talent. And a commitment from several former four- and five-star recruits to buy into the national championship process and roles without question.

There are numerous reasons why this South Carolina team, the team of purported destiny that lost only two games all season by a combined three points, is the best to do it under Staley at USC.

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It has the necessary bill.

South Carolina players celebrate after a college basketball game in the final round of the Women's Final Four NCAA tournament against UConn Sunday, April 3, 2022, in Minneapolis.  South Carolina won 64-49 to win the championship.  (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

►The National Player of the Year in junior star junior forward Aliyah Boston shouldering the load with opposing teams packing the paint in attempt to slow her down and still efficiently and consistently.

►Senior point guard Destanni Henderson, who dropped a career-high 26 points in the 2022 National Championship Game against UConn, was also on finalist lists for top overall player and the nation’s best point guard. She played like it during the Gamecocks’ NCAA tourney run to the title.

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