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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Wednesday Cardinal Couple -- Recruiting roundup


(Basketball recruiting is one of the favorite topics and a big source of e-mails from our readers here at the ol' CARDINAL COUPLE and who else better to handle it than our esteemed recruting columnist Jenny O'Bryan? Today, she catches us up on the latest news.) 

- Meet four impact players with Louisville on their short lists

I keep getting questions as to what is going on in the recruiting world, specifically with the students who have already made their official visit. 

As was reported Monday, by Paul, Brianna Ruiz has committed to University of Washington.  Ruiz, a guard, stated that she “feels like it is better for me on the West Coast, kind of”.  Whatever her reason, Cardinal Couple wishes her well in her collegiate career.  Kevin McGuff, formerly of Xavier, coaches U. OF  WASHINGTON and he is assembling talent on his roster.  I look forward to seeing him impact the PAC-12.

Imani Wright is a 6-0 guard out of Hooks, Texas.   She was on campus several weeks ago alongside Brianna Ruiz.  She has her final official visit scheduled for this weekend at Kentucky.  Jody Demling, at Cardinal Authority, has a really nice write-up about Wright.  Check it out, here:

The Wright choice coming soon?

Saniya Chong is a 5-9 guard out of Ossining, NY.  She visited the Louisville campus a few weeks back and visited the campus of Ohio State this past weekend.  She still has an official visit with UCONN scheduled for this upcoming weekend (10/12).  To my knowledge, those are the final 3 schools on her list.  Maryland was previously in her top 4 but appears to have been cut from her list.  I have seen no timeline in regards to when she will make her decision.

Emmonnie Henderson is a post player out of Edwardsville, IL.  Her final four includes Louisville, Tennessee, Miami and Purdue.  She took an official visit to Miami in late September.  I am uncertain of her official visit to Purdue.  Her official visit to Tennessee is scheduled for the weekend of 10/19-21 and with Louisville the weekend of 10/26-28.  As recently as two weeks ago she was quoted as saying that Louisville is currently in the lead for her services.  Like the aforementioned recruits, I have not heard a timeline for her decision. 

Mercedes Russell is the #1 player in the country and is down to 2 schools, Louisville and Tennessee.  Her official visits to Tennessee and Louisville are the same weekends as Henderson’s.  Russell has stated that she intends to make her decision before high school ball starts, and most recently has stated that she hopes to make her decision a few days after returning from the Louisville visit. 

While Russell is the only Louisville recruit on record, that I can find, as having said she will make her decision shortly after her last visit, it is reasonable to think all of these recruits will be making decisions in the very near future.  They are all winding down their visits, and all have been visited at home by coaching staffs.  While the regular signing period is not until April of one’s senior year, many student athletes opt to sign in the early signing period, which is mid-November.   

Regardless of what happens with each of these recruits, it is crucial to remember the regular signing period is not until April.   Both Shoni Schimmel and Bria Smith were signed after the regular signing period.  November is not a deadline for recruiting the class of 2013.    

Another point to keep in mind regarding these recruits, each of them has Louisville in their very short lists.  Coach Walz and his staff are up against perennial programs (Baylor, Tennessee, UCONN) for these highly sought after recruits.    Louisville may land all of them, some of them, or none of them.  Regardless of what happens, Coach Walz has elevated this program to a consistent top 20 program.  Louisville is relevant, in the conversation and rising. 

I look forward to the next few weeks as decisions are made.  The season is around the corner, Louisville is ranked preseason as a top 10 team and the program is on the cusp of landing the #1 player in the country. 

Can I get an ‘L yeah? 

( Any or all of these four excellent student-athletes would compliment a very good Cardinal WBB team in the 2013-14 season and go on to be valuable and productive players in the Cardinal system. Keep it here at CARDINAL COUPLE for any late-breaking or relevant news concerning recruiting and ALL Cardinal womens' sports! )


  1. I hope ms.mercedes signs r commits after her visit that will start r best recruiting class ever.

  2. Jenny
    Thanks for tracking the information. I needed an update to organize who was in the picture.
    Go Cards!

    Sandy W

  3. A backcourt of Chong and Wright would give Louisville an incredible shot
    at national championship in future years if they team up with the power
    of Henderson and the out of this world skills that Russell has.

    Go get all four of these recruits mentioned in today's article, Coach Walz!

    --Joe Hill--

  4. Any idea if Louisville is on Linnae Harper's list? UConn and Tenn are both after Harper, and at #5 in HoopGurlz, she is ranked much higher than Wright (#31), Henderson (#40) and Chong (#75), which lists them all as guards. (I suspect Chong is much higher than #75 or UConn wouldn't be after her.)
    --PDX Phil

  5. I had heard there was certainly interest on our part, but we did not make the official visit list. For that matter, UCONN did not either. She was at TN this past weekend on an official there. Everything I have read suggests she is KY's to lose. But, that is just chatter and people's opinion, apparently a close friend and former teammate is a freshman there this year. Janae Thompson maybe. I am speaking from memory and have not had a chance to fact check the friends name. Harper has been v. v private with recruitment info.

  6. Is there a scrimmage scheduled if so what day n is it for public.

    1. The Lady Cards have never had one in recent memory and we've not heard of any plans to schedule one yet. It is an idea that does have merit, though and maybe it's something that should be looked at. My guess is you could get 10,000 or so for it.


  7. How long will it be before other schools start going after Walz like they do with Charlie Strong, Bobby Petrino, rtc?


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