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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wednesday Couple -- 2013 is talented and deep


-Jenny looks to the future

( Our Jenny O'Bryan spends this Wednesday gazing into her crystal WBB ball and looking at some high school stars. Results may vary, there are no guarantees and we accept all major credit cards.) 

She'll have a report on the Adidas Nationals team camp and Emmonnie Henderson on sure to check back here at CARDINAL COUPLE to get her views!  

College women’s basketball teams are allotted 15 scholarship players on their roster.  (This is different for the men, as they are allowed 13 scholarship players).  Whether a coach decides to use all of the scholarships, I presume, is up to the coach.   Coach Walz seems to stay at or near capacity in terms of how he operates his program, as a rule. One can never predict injuries and other circumstances for the most part, so things can and do change.   

Show us the Monny! (Next year?)
This upcoming season looks like a roster of 13 eligible players.  I've heard that Monny Niamke will be on campus, but will have to sit out a year.  This would potentially bring the number of scholarship players to 14.  So, there could be one scholarship to give, should Coach Walz decide to use it.

 I personally think that the incoming class of 2012 is in the books and we will not see any additions to the roster.  I think this is a good idea, because the class of 2013 is incredibly talented and is deep with elite players that can make an immediate impact upon hitting college campuses. The additions to an already strong UofL roster would be a building upon what is already great. You lose players, you gain players. It is how college basketball operates. 

By my count, Louisville could have 4 scholarships to offer for the incoming class of 2013. I caution the reader that things are always subject to change. 

We are impressed with Makayla
Keep in mind one of these scholarships is already spoken for in the verbal commitment of Makayla Epps.  That leaves 3 available, should Coach Walz decide to have a full roster for the 2013-14 year.

As a faithful reader of Cardinal Couple, you all know that Mercedes Russell and Becca Greenwell are two top targets for this class.  Should they both commit to Louisville that leaves one scholarship still available, should Coach Walz go with a full roster.  Should one, or neither of them commit, well, you can do the math.    

WE want a Mercedes parked in the
KFC YUM! Center for four years.
So, what other players are now mentioning Louisville or considering?  Or, who else could Louisville be watching or considering?   There are a handful of names that come up as interested in Louisville.   I have not given a lot of time to some of these athletes as they have included Louisville amongst 8-10 programs on their (not so) short lists.   Recently, though, there have been two athletes who have narrowed their lists even shorter, and Louisville still remains on their list.   So, who are they?

Saniya Chong is a guard out of Ossining, NY.  She recently cut her list of schools to 4.  In no particular order, Louisville, UCONN, Maryland and Ohio State have made the cut.  According to the attached article, virtually every school in the Big East and ACC has recruited her.  According to Hoopgurlz Chong is not ranked in the top 60 in the country though Blue Star ranks her at #25 in the country.    I have only read reports and message board accounts of this player.  I have not seen her play, nor have I seen game time video of her. 

Saniya Chong: Stay away from the Husky
lure. Keep your game Cardinal pure! 
Please read the attached link about Chong.  You will have to bear with the writer here, as there are lots of comparisons to current UCONN players.  But, in doing so, it will help you understand the talent of this young woman, as it is current UCONN players that the writer compares Chong to.  Of special interest are the follow up impressions of the writer in the comment section.  Please also read the comment section for second, third and fourth viewings of Chong playing and the writers thoughts about her game. 

Pretty impressive young player, eh?  We are in her top 4.   Like I said, the class of 2013 is deep and talented. 

Emmonnie Henderson is a power forward who plays for Edwardsville High School in Illinois.   Like Chong, Henderson has recently cut her list to 5.  Those still in the running for her services, in no particular order are Louisville, Kentucky, Purdue, Miami (FL) and Tennessee.   

So, what we gotta do to get you
away from Purdue? Throw the
shot and discus here, too?
(Cardinal field throwers are
among the best in the nation.)
Hoopgurlz describes this player as “strong as an ox” and a very good game within 15’.  She can create her own shots, and is working on extending her  mid-range game. 

Henderson had stated as recently as this past May that Purdue is the frontrunner, though I am hearing rumblings of that not being necessarily the case.    Henderson intends to major in engineering (uh, Speed School anyone?) and has been very impressed with the multiple visits she has made to Purdue.   Henderson also has a passion for track and field and wants to remain involved in that, too( yeah, we have that too!).  She has a love of shot put and discus and has been clear that she does not want to give that up. 

Andi has game. We shortened her
There are still several other top-level athletes that have Louisville in the mix of the schools they are considering.   Until individual players pare those lists down a bit, I will not give a whole lot of time to them here.    For those of you who are interested in looking them up and doing your own research, names that are somewhere on the radar of Louisville are Kendall Waters out of California, Alexandra Harris out of Ohio, Halle Washington out of Louisiana, Andrijana Cvitkovic out of Indiana and Nina Davis out of Tennessee. 

Kaela Davis climbed down from Rocky Top.
Head north to the Ohio River... K.D.!!
 One last name that has been mentioned in the very recent past is Kaela Davis out of Georgia.  Davis is currently ranked #2 in the country and reopened her recruitment about this time last summer after having verbally committed to Tennessee.   A very reliable source indicated that Davis was to visit Louisville the Monday before the last Elite Camp.  That visit was cancelled and is to be rescheduled in the near future. 

I do not know how many of the above-mentioned athletes have official offers from Louisville.  I do know that aside from Russell and Greenwell, Chong and Cvitkovic do have offers.  Beyond that there is some level of interest, to what degree, I do not know. The recruiting game is not an exact science. Things change. Situations change. It's not a GPS device. The end destination can change and vary.

A young Cardinal fan makes an
impassioned plea to Coach Norman.
"Please bring Becca Greenwell to
fly into the YUM and soar with the Cards". 
While I have spent a lot of time talking about Russell and Greenwell, and I certainly hope that we land them as future Cardinals, all is not lost if we do not.  There are many very talented athletes that are involved with the Louisville coaching staff that would make excellent additions to the Cardinal team. The players currently on board are top of the line and if Louisville didn't manage to get any of the recruits mentioned above, they would still be a deep, talented and dangerous squad. 

This class is just a few short months away from starting their senior year in high school.  We should start to see this recruiting class fall in to place by the time our Cardinals take to the court this upcoming season.  Until then, keep your eyes peeled for some of the aforementioned names, and continue to check Cardinal Couple for updates!

( Top notch, top notch...Jenny! Recruiting is a process. Nothing is guaranteed until the school officially announces a player. Even then, situations can change. We speculate here at CARDINAL COUPLE, based on what we hear, read and think. We aren't experts but fans like to be kept abreast and we try to provide our opinions and guesses. We look forward to following these outstanding senior prospects throughout their final seasons in high school.)




  1. Recruiting changes. I never pay a whole bunch of attention to it. I look at the roster that dresses for the first game. Recruiting is speculation. Show me the players, to paraphrase Tom Cruise.

    -- Joe Hill --

  2. How realistically are the chances of Louisville getting both Greenwell and Russell?

    1. WE can't say because we aren't them. All we can do is comment and speculate on what we hear, read and learn. Both girls have Louisville as a possible school that they are considering attending. As much as we'd like to be able to use the Vulcan mind-merge with them and get a 100% true and honest assessment, that ain't happening. Who knows? They may not even know themselves yet.

      As fans, we can only hope they join a program we love to death. As writers, we try to cover them and express hope that they'll choose UofL.


  3. UofL won't get either. Russell will join her friends at UNC and Greenwell will join us at Notre Dame.

    Fighting Irish Fan

  4. Chong is the real deal. She'll be a program changer wherever she ends up. Halle Washington has been coming on strong over the last several months and will be a great one in college also. Nice to know that these girls are showing some interest in UofL!


  5. Temple Game is Tailgating with a Bloody Mary For Breakfast to get the Party Going!

    1. And Al Parrish makes a world famous one over at 80 Under 80 and the Parrish House. Booyah!



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