Gamecocks receive huge boost to their backcourt with elite transfer

Gamecocks receive huge boost to their backcourt with elite transfer

**Release by Kyle Heck/photo by Jenny Dilworth**

On Tuesday, South Carolina officially announced the addition of Te'a Cooper to the program. A transfer from Tennessee, Cooper posted a video of herself in South Carolina basketball shorts on Monday.

Cooper is another elite transfer for the Gamecocks. She was an SEC All-Freshman Team selection in 2015-16 after finishing fourth in scoring on that Tennessee team, which advanced to the NCAA Elite Eight. She averaged 8.6 points, 2.1 assists and 1.2 steals in her first collegiate season, drawing 15 starts among her 36 games played. Cooper suffered a knee injury in Summer 2016, which forced her to sit out the 2016-17 campaign.

As a high school senior, Cooper was ranked as high as the No. 1 point guard in the Class of 2014, and was the No. 12 overall recruit in the class according to espnW HoopGurlz. A McDonald’s All-American, she also earned that status from USA Today, Parade and MaxPreps. She was the Georgia Sports Writers Association Miss Basketball in 2014 and 2015.

Cooper follows in the footsteps of Kaela Davis and Allisha Gray, two transfers from Georgia Tech and North Carolina, respectively, who played with South Carolina last season and won a national championship. Both are now in the WNBA. As was the case with Davis and Gray, Cooper will have to sit out a season because of NCAA rules. She'll be eligible to play beginning with the 2018-19 season. 

“Adding a talent such as Te’a Cooper to our Gamecock family complements the players that we have,” head coach Dawn Staley said in a release. “Her experience playing against top level competition will be a tremendous addition in sustaining our success.”