2024 Recruiting

Team Ball

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Don't care that McGill's only 5-7, she is so fast and an excellent passer. Tough on the ball defender. Hopefully the next Gophers head coach makes a good connection. McGill is a great player. I need to win the lottery so I can create an NIL slush fund for Gophers WBB. Doesn't have to be me but wish a Gophers women's BBall fan would win lottery. I hope McGill changes her mind, she plays well at Williams Arena and at least gives the next head coach some consideration. I suppose not likely.
I don't think that's the reality. I think that's the hype, the tattoo's, and the Hopkins pizazz. I think the reality is: She's not a good outside shooter, and she isn't much of a passer--not much vision. She averages 3 assists a game, and she's passing to two power 5 DI players. Assists should be easy, yet getting only 3 a game means it's hard for her. She had 10 points on 4 for 17 shooting in the title game, with 7 turnovers. I think that's reality.
 
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gopherdudepart2

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I don't think that's the reality. I think that's the hype, the tatoo's, and the Hopkins pizaz. I think the reality is: She's not a good outside shooter, and she isn't much of a passer--not much vision. She averages 3 assists a game, and she's passing to two power 5 DI players. Assists should be easy, yet getting only 3 a game means it's hard for her. She had 10 points on 4 for 17 shooting in the title game, with 7 turnovers. I think that's reality.
You might be right, I was impressed with her quickness and on the ball defense. Saint Michael had best player in State and good complimentary players, and Hopkins outside shooting was poor. Being only 5-7 in college may be a hinderance, but she has opportunity to be a good passer in College with right coaching, and teammates. She got an SEC offer to Florida D1, so good for McGill. My main point was quickness, and in today's game you need players that are fast and play up tempo ball. You need Big people that can play point forward and run. Seems like game is evolving away from traditional centers and Bigs to a faster paced game. That and to your point good outside shooters.
 

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ESPN ranks McGill as an elite point guard.


The Gophers have an elite point guard in Battle. Therefore, it wouldn't make sense for McGill to play for Minnesota as she surely would be the starter somewhere.

Gophers do need some players to emerge at wing/small forward/other shooting guard plus rotation minutes with shooting guard Braun. I don't think it would be best for McGill to play that role. She's an elite 5' 7" point guard.
 

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I also could never imagine Battle being moved to any spot not the starting point guard. The Gophers are fortunate to have Battle running the point. She's special. I am happy for her and the team for the great things about to come.
 

Team Ball

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You might be right, I was impressed with her quickness and on the ball defense. Saint Michael had best player in State and good complimentary players, and Hopkins outside shooting was poor. Being only 5-7 in college may be a hinderance, but she has opportunity to be a good passer in College with right coaching, and teammates. She got an SEC offer to Florida D1, so good for McGill. My main point was quickness, and in today's game you need players that are fast and play up tempo ball. You need Big people that can play point forward and run. Seems like game is evolving away from traditional centers and Bigs to a faster paced game. That and to your point good outside shooters.
Point well made. I'm sure I'm being too hard on her. I just watched some of her highlights and she had some nice passes. But I wouldn't want a point guard that didn't have 6 or more assists a game. I think that's a key to an elite team.
 


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I have watched a lot of girls high school and AAU basketball the last few years, and have seen dozens of Lake Conference games. Personally, I think McGill reaps the benefits of the players she has around her but I don't think she's going to be able to carry Hopkins on her own next season. After Woodson quit the Metro Stars and when Nunu wasn't playing for them, they didn't have much success despite the other talent on that roster. Hopkins played in the pre-season Sweet 16 without either of them but with McGill and lost that tournament for the first time in years. McGill is fast and has some talent but I think the limits of that are going to he seen this year on the AAU circuit and next year at Hopkins because the elite cast she's had around her will be gone. I assume one of the reasons why she committed prior to the AAU season was to make sure she did it when her stock was at its highest.

Also, I don't think she was ever going to stay in Minnesota. She's going for a flashy program with lots of big personalities where she is free to be as flamboyant as she wants to be. I wish her the best in her college career. She's been a fun one to watch.
 

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I have watched a lot of girls high school and AAU basketball the last few years, and have seen dozens of Lake Conference games. Personally, I think McGill reaps the benefits of the players she has around her but I don't think she's going to be able to carry Hopkins on her own next season. After Woodson quit the Metro Stars and when Nunu wasn't playing for them, they didn't have much success despite the other talent on that roster. Hopkins played in the pre-season Sweet 16 without either of them but with McGill and lost that tournament for the first time in years. McGill is fast and has some talent but I think the limits of that are going to he seen this year on the AAU circuit and next year at Hopkins because the elite cast she's had around her will be gone. I assume one of the reasons why she committed prior to the AAU season was to make sure she did it when her stock was at its highest.

Also, I don't think she was ever going to stay in Minnesota. She's going for a flashy program with lots of big personalities where she is free to be as flamboyant as she wants to be. I wish her the best in her college career. She's been a fun one to watch.
Florida has really taken a hit this offseason from the portal....
 


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“She said Saturday that her final list was similar to that, except Minnesota had entered the picture after hiring Dawn Plitzuweit as coach after the season and Ohio State was no longer included.
She was familiar with nearby UW and Iowa, North Carolina and Duke (she had taken unofficial visits to Iowa, North Carolina and Duke), so official visits likely weren’t going to be planned for those places. She said Saturday she and her family were planning official visits to Oregon (where she had made an unofficial visit), Minnesota and Kansas. But those plans changed when she decided Iowa was her choice.”

 
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All four of the top 4 recruits in South Dakota are committed to South Dakota State, a perennial NCAA Tournament team (that doesn't go far once making it).

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From Wisconsin state 2024 recruits
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Minnesota 2024
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Illinois 2024
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Michigan 2024
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North Dakota
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Xamiya Walton of Illinois commits to Northwestern University. She's the #54 2024 prospect in America per ESPN HoopGurlz. I believe she was the first high school player in Illinois to sign an NIL deal. Caveat: She's 5' 5" that can be problematic in college ball against tall teams.

 

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#1 2024 Michigan prospect Gabrielle Reynolds has an offer from Michigan and other schools. She's a 5' 10" point guard who seems good but not in the upper elite. Michigan actually has guard Taylor Woodson (from Minnesota) going to Michigan 2023 and point guard Olivia Olson (from Minnesota) going to Michigan in 2024. I wonder if Minnesota would be a potential school for Reynolds. She'd play point guard backup/rotation and 3 guard sets. Amaya Battle would be a junior than.


1682176024148.png
 

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Xamiya Walton of Illinois commits to Northwestern University. She's the #54 2024 prospect in America per ESPN HoopGurlz. I believe she was the first high school player in Illinois to sign an NIL deal. Caveat: She's 5' 5" that can be problematic in college ball against tall teams.

Sayin it for the past several years, short guards (less than 5'9") have a tough time in the big conferences. Liability on defense - taller guards post them and score with ease, lots of turnovers, shots are blocked, don't have the wingspan for defensive schemes and traps, etc.. Look at the Gopher guards the past 4-5 years - turnover machines and poor defenders.
 



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In Illinois, Kloe Froeb set the single-game record for most points scored at 45 during the state semi-final game and during the season averaging 28.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 5.6 steals and five assists per game this season. She was runner-up Ms Basketball and New Gazette player of the year. Rankings have her from #1 in state to 3rd.




Illinois's Tahj Bloom is rated the #44 prospect in the nation by ESPN Hoop Gurlz. She's a wing/forward and probably an ideal type of player for the Coach P system. She has an offer from Ohio State.

 

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This is only a guess. The Gophers coaches are attending Select 40 this weekend. Several good players (like Tahj Bloom mentioned above) will be playing. There are multiple events including The Clash/Select 40 in Ohio.











THE CLASH/Select 40 in Hamilton, OH:






Live at the Nook in Pennsylvania:


 
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SHGopher

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This is only a guess. The Gophers coaches are attending Select 40 this weekend. Several good players (like Tahj Bloom mentioned above) will be playing. There are multiple events including The Clash/Select 40 in Ohio.











THE CLASH/Select 40 in Hamilton, OH:






Live at the Nook in Pennsylvania:




And I see that's exactly what's on the ticket image in the Tweet:

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#1 2024 Michigan prospect Gabrielle Reynolds has an offer from Michigan and other schools.
Is that a new Michigan offer? I had seen MAC offers only (perhaps incorrect?) for Reynolds 6-8 weeks ago. With Olson committed, surprised by the Reynolds offer.
 

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Is that a new Michigan offer? I had seen MAC offers only (perhaps incorrect?) for Reynolds 6-8 weeks ago. With Olson committed, surprised by the Reynolds offer.


Thanks for asking. This is the source:


"Reynolds holds nine Division-I scholarship, including one from the University of Michigan."
 

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They are also at Boo Williams in Virginia, which will showcase the best Nike EYBL teams in the nation.
 

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They are also at Boo Williams in Virginia, which will showcase the best Nike EYBL teams in the nation.

Cool. I just checked that out. The world of top youth basketball...


NIKE INVITATIONAL, NIKE EYBL AND HBCU SHOWCASE​



Hey, I see North Tartan is there. All Iowa Attack. Michigan Crossover. Midwest Elite (near Chicago). WI Flight Elite.


I think Wisconsin Lakers are at the other tournament.


Games are even streamed live. Cal Sparks and Team Durant on one screen. Pro Skills and TN Flight at another. At another court...


 
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Nationally, girls basketball is strong! And that means strong future players for strong college basketball.



Minnesota-based North Tartan made a strong showing for multiple teams at Boo Williams.



Looks like Fury and Metro Stars were at a couple different places. I don't follow this topic closely, learning here, but do know the upper Midwest has a lot of talent headed to many colleges in the years ahead.



 

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Nationally, girls basketball is strong! And that means strong future players for strong college basketball.



Minnesota-based North Tartan made a strong showing for multiple teams at Boo Williams.



Looks like Fury and Metro Stars were at a couple different places. I don't follow this topic closely, learning here, but do know the upper Midwest has a lot of talent headed to many colleges in the years ahead.



Neither of those Fury or Metro Stars teams have 2024 players on them. Fury was split between the UAA teams that played in Pennsylvania and the Select 40 teams that played in Dallas. Metro Stars teams all seemed to be in Milwaukee this past weekend. Interestingly, the MetroStars 2024 3SSB team, the one with Liv McGill and Jakayla Craft, struggled at that Milwaukee tournament.

The 17U North Tartan team basically won a consolation championship, which is a little surprising to me considering all the supposedly high-caliber talent they have on that team. The most impressive North Tartan team at the first EYBL session was the 15U (2026) Team, which won the Platinum championship. I think that is the team to keep an eye on.
 

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Neither of those Fury or Metro Stars teams have 2024 players on them. Fury was split between the UAA teams that played in Pennsylvania and the Select 40 teams that played in Dallas. Metro Stars teams all seemed to be in Milwaukee this past weekend. Interestingly, the MetroStars 2024 3SSB team, the one with Liv McGill and Jakayla Craft, struggled at that Milwaukee tournament.

The 17U North Tartan team basically won a consolation championship, which is a little surprising to me considering all the supposedly high-caliber talent they have on that team. The most impressive North Tartan team at the first EYBL session was the 15U (2026) Team, which won the Platinum championship. I think that is the team to keep an eye on.
The top AAU teams this year and last year have been from IA and WI. We finally have a coach now that will be able to recruit some players from those teams, especially the top EYBL teams. No longer just recruiting the Fury, MS, and NT teams.
 

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The top AAU teams this year and last year have been from IA and WI. We finally have a coach now that will be able to recruit some players from those teams, especially the top EYBL teams. No longer just recruiting the Fury, MS, and NT teams.

All Iowa Attack seems to have built some great relationships with both the Iowa and Iowa State programs. Both of those programs, as well as Drake, receive a huge pipeline of in-state talent from that one club, which is paying dividends for the state now. That doesn't seem to happen here in MN. It will be interesting to see if Coach P tries to build those relationships with the in-state AAU clubs, or if she will look elsewhere.
 

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Olivia Olson was a recent guest on a (local?) podcast called Backyard Sports. It's worth a listen, because she's fairly open, but also exceptionally humble. She covered NIL, trying out and playing for Team USA, and a whole bunch of other topics that I found interesting. As far as recruiting goes, she said her #1 priority was playing close to her family, but also mentioned her top picks for schools and the U was not among them.

It's less than 30 minutes, so an easy listen (though the hosts seemed to know nothing about women's basketball).

 

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Olivia Olson was a recent guest on a (local?) podcast called Backyard Sports. It's worth a listen, because she's fairly open, but also exceptionally humble. She covered NIL, trying out and playing for Team USA, and a whole bunch of other topics that I found interesting. As far as recruiting goes, she said her #1 priority was playing close to her family, but also mentioned her top picks for schools and the U was not among them.

It's less than 30 minutes, so an easy listen (though the hosts seemed to know nothing about women's basketball).


Thank you! Some excerpts from the interview:


Olson wanted to stay in the Midwest especially because her parents can come to a lot of games. “That was important to me.”


Olson was asked if anything else made her choose Michigan over other schools, besides location:


“I have such a great relationship with the coaches at Michigan. And one of my best friends is going there. She’s a year older than me. So that played a pretty good role in it. Just kind of their… they believe in me a lot. They also give constructive criticism when they’re at my games. Like they’ll send me three pages of scout notes, like what they think, like what I need to improve on. No other school really did that for me. Like the genuine want for me to do good. How they believed in me. That really played a role."


Duke, Michigan, Notre Dame, Vanderbilt, UConn were favorites.


When asked if she knew Paige Bueckers, said they knew each other, had talked to her. Olson said she wanted to go her own way and not follow in Paige Buecker’s steps at UConn.


Plays with MN Fury. In the summer, “I focus on training and weight lifting. I do those two every day. And then we also have AAU practice.” Trains with a trainer, the owner at 43 Hoops.


“I got my first offer in 8th grade, like January, during the high school season. That was from Minnesota, like, my hometown team. I started to get a lot more from AAU traveling. Yea, it was a surprise. I didn’t expect it at all. I was just so happy to be able to call her, the head coach there. But then they offered me and I was like, ‘Wait. What?’ I paused for a minute. And she told me again. I didn’t believe her even after I hung up. And then I went and told my parents. They didn’t believe me either.”


Then came floods of offers and contacts from universities.
 

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Highly sought after 5 star prospect Chloe Spreen, the best player in Indiana, had many top offers including from Indiana and Iowa -- and then chose Alabama???

A quote in this article reminds me of some things Olivia Olson said in her interview:



"The emphasis for Spreen was on the comfort of the program. 'They supported me through this whole process very well,' Spreen said. 'It's a place I felt valued and wanted. I want to be part of something I can grow into. But it was the people and the family base of it, the best fit for me.'
 

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Highly sought after 5 star prospect Chloe Spreen, the best player in Indiana, had many top offers including from Indiana and Iowa -- and then chose Alabama??? . . .
Not sure about the 5-star label. While ESPN ranked her early on in the top 25 of the '24 class, she is no longer listed in the ESPN top 60 for the '24 class. Blue Star Basketball still has her ranked # 24, but they update irregularly, and seem to have less than national scope these days, but hard for a non-subscriber to tell. She was also ranked # 28 early on by All Star Girls Report, but their public rankings haven't been updated since I don't know when, whereas ESPN was updated in the last month or so.

edit: Spreen's ESPN ranking fall reminds me a little of Alexia Smith, who was ranked high early on by ESPN, then fell to 46 by ESPN, then fell to 68 by ESPN by winter/spring of her senior year. Still, the Gophers trumpeted her as a 5-star recruit.
 
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SHGopher

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Not sure about the 5-star label. While ESPN ranked her early on in the top 25 of the '24 class, she is no longer listed in the ESPN top 60 for the '24 class. Blue Star Basketball still has her ranked # 24, but they update irregularly, and seem to have less than national scope these days, but hard for a non-subscriber to tell. She was also ranked # 28 early on by All Star Girls Report, but their public rankings haven't been updated since I don't know when, whereas ESPN was updated in the last month or so.

edit: Spreen's ESPN ranking fall reminds me a little of Alexia Smith, who was ranked high early on by ESPN, then fell to 46 by ESPN, then fell to 68 by ESPN by winter/spring of her senior year. Still, the Gophers trumpeted her as a 5-star recruit.


I hear you. 5 star was too rich of a phrase to use there.

Your post reminds me, I just discovered this new ranker called ASGR. The ESPN ranking to me has had so many misses. I'm curious about alternatives. Spreen in this is #28 and I'm guessing it's not updated often. It has Olivia Olson #2 in the nation.





 

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.Your post reminds me, I just discovered this new ranker called ASGR. The ESPN ranking to me has had so many misses. I'm curious about alternatives. Spreen in this is #28 and I'm guessing it's not updated often. It has Olivia Olson #2 in the nation. . . .
ASGR is an old ranker. Shorthand for All Star Girls Report. But their ranker, Bret McCormick, left ASGR in 2022, and I don’t believe their rankings have been updated since he left.
 




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