Geno - Kevin

UCONN – Geno & “K O” get Greedy after National Titles


As we have seen before in Storrs, CT…National Titles make Huskies HUNGRY.  UCONN basketball coaches Geno Auriemma & Kevin Ollie apparently haven’t finished celebrating  OR working.  As they have both used the fruits of their respective recent national Championships ( accomplished same feat in 2004 ) to set the tone for potential monster Recruiting classes .

After a big UNofficial visit weekend in mid April  in which Geno and staff hosted four highly regarded recruits, it only took a month for three of them to verbally commit to Coach Auriemma. All three are rated Top 10 prospects in the 2015 class by ESPN, led by 6’3″  Katie Lou Samuelson (Mater Dei H.S. in CA) considered the #1 recruit in the country.

Samuelson joins fellow top 10 national recruits 6’1″  Napheesa Collier (Incarnate Word Academy in MO ) and 6’2″  De’Janae Boykin ( C.H. Flowers H.S. in MD ) on the list of early commitments, as UConn is well on its way to securing what could rank among the best classes in program history. Add in Georgetown  transfer 6’5″ Natalie Butler,  who was selected as the 2013-14 Big East Rookie of the Year . Butler finished fifth in the nation in rebounding (13.3 per game) and first among all freshmen in Division I women’s college basketball, while also averaging 14 ppg.

“I think Natalie is one of the most unique players in the game today,” head coach Geno Auriemma said.  “There just aren’t many 6-5 players in the country and we just had a great one for the last four years, so we know.  Natalie has the potential to be just as good and we are very excited for her to get on campus.”   


Auriemma made quite an impression on Samuelson during the recruiting process.

“He’s so straight forward and he tells you exactly what he thinks,’’ Samuelson said. “He doesn’t have to lie or like sweet talk you to get there. He tells you how it is and as a player you know what he’s telling you is the truth and you can see by all the great players that have come out of there and everything that he’s done with that program.’’

SAMUELSON Evaluation :    Long, agile and skilled perimeter performer; outstanding offensive threat with consistent range at the arc; reads defenses and screens with footwork on catch-and-shoot game; has added a dribble-drive game to her arsenal that keeps the defense honest; an elite-level prospect and the most productive small forward in the 2015 class. (Dan Olson – ESPN HoopGurlz)

COLLIER Evaluation :    Long, athletic and versatile perimeter performer consistently exploits off the dribble, finishes to rim in traffic; emerging mid-range game to the arc completes the total package; spider-like wingspan competes on glass, defends passing lanes; impacts at the next level. (Dan Olson – ESPN HoopGurlz) 

BOYKIN Evaluation :    College-ready frame with versatile faceup-4 game; skilled interior attack finishes in traffic, nimble footwork, explosive to rim in mid-post game; developing perimeter threat; versatile defender . Great combination of size and basketball skill. She isn’t afraid to attack the basket against multiple defenders, understands how to draw contact and get fouled. Has the tools and talent to be a special player. (Olsen & Bodine – ESPN HoopGurlz) 

If that trifecta wasn’t enough…. Geno and staff are still strongly in the mix for 5’10” Asia Durr, the #2 rated player in the country by ESPN and the consensus best Guard in 2015 class.

 DURR Evaluation :    Dominating left-handed combo guard delivers the complete package in the backcourt; manufactures and attacks, consistently delivers in the mid-range game; fluid off the dribble, body control draws contact and finishes the play; superb leader in half-court game; anticipator defensively, converts in pressure; the elite prospect in the class of 2015. ( Dan Olson – ESPN HoopGurlz)



Coach Ollie and his staff are on a similar quest for a MEGA class.  They already have a verbal commitment from highly regarded Guard Jalen Adams (Roxbury, MA ) , ranked #33 by ESPN. They are also heavily involved with two kids ranked in ESPN’s top 5 , 6’3″ SG Malik Newman (Jackson, MS ) & 6’10” Center Diamond Stone (Milwaukee,WI ) , as well as top 20 ranked Isaiah Briscoe, a 6-3 Guard (Union, NJ), Top 30 ranked 6’6″ Derrick Jones ( Philadelphia, PA ) and heavily emerging 6’9″ Forward Steven Enoch ( Norwalk, CT )



Adams not only hails from the same hometown as Napier, but shares many of the same traits as a clutch, winning player.

“I’ve never seen anything like this kid,” Barry Connors, Adams’ coach at Cushing Academy, told the Register. “He just makes winning plays. The ball just ends up in his hands — loose balls, rebounds, deflections.”

 Quotes provided from July 7th article by David Borges – New Haven Register }




(on reported package deal with Diamond Stone )

“It’s 100 percent,” Newman told in late May. “Hopefully, everything works out. But right now, everything is going good. That’s the plan — we don’t plan on changing.” Newman was originally slated to visit UConn with Stone in June, but backed out at the last minute.

 Quotes provided from July 7th article by David Borges – New Haven Register }





Diamond Stone, a 6-10, 250-pound center out of Milwaukee and a national top 10 recruit. Stone visited UConn back in early June, though there are no details to report as Stone has kept his recruitment remarkably close to the vest. Stone and Malik Newman, a 6-3 combo guard out of Jackson, Mississippi, and also a five-star prospect, have said they’re a “package deal.”






“He’s fearless,” said Jim Salmon, who coaches Briscoe on the New Jersey Playaz AAU team. “He’s two plays ahead on the floor. He’d rather give an assist or a Gretzky — the pass before the assist — rather than scoring. This year, he’s put the team on his back. He’s led us all season. He passes out uniforms, collects them after the game, washes them, wakes his teammates up in the hotel. He’s like an assistant coach for us.”

Briscoe recently narrowed his list of schools down to UConn, Arizona, Louisville, St. John’s, Seton Hall, Rutgers and Villanova. Salmon used to coach UConn director of basketball administration Kevin Freeman at Paterson (N.J.) Catholic, so, “I’d be delighted if he went to UConn.”

 Quotes provided from July 7th article by David Borges – New Haven Register }





Derrick Jones, a 6-6, freakishly athletic small forward out of Philadelphia. The Huskies may have a bit of a built-in advantage in Jones’ recruitment: his AAU coach for We-R1 is Terrell Myers, a New Haven native and former Hillhouse star who went on to play at St. Joseph’s University. Myers has known Ollie since their college days (playing with and against each other in numerous pro-ams), and Ollie used to come to speak to players at a camp Myers ran. Myers accompanied Jones on an unofficial visit to Storrs last week.

“I think coach Ollie did a great job while we were there,” Myers said. “They crossed the t’s, dotted the i’s, explained what UConn basketball is all about. He really, really enjoyed his visit. It’s a place he can really thrive.

Myers added that Jones is “extremely athletic, and really knows how to play the game of basketball, as well. He understands the nuances of it. That’s the greatest thing about him. His upside can be tremendous, but he’s still scratching the surface. He’s so athletic, people don’t understand other things he can do because he wows you with his athleticism.”

{  Quotes provided from July 7th article by David Borges – New Haven Register }




Enoch really burst on the scene at the Pangos All-American Camp May 30-June 1 out in California, where he outplayed Steven Zimmerman, one of the top Class of 2015 big men in the nation. Enoch has visited UConn a couple of times, most recently on June 26 — the night of the NBA Draft.

“I enjoyed my last visit a lot,” he told the Register. “The thing I enjoyed most was meeting the players and seeing them work out, because I can use some of the drills they were doing.”

Enoch added: “Growing up in Connecticut, I was surrounded by a major amount of Huskies fans, including my parents, so the team has always been in the atmosphere.” In fact, he is tight with ex-Husky and current Detroit Piston standout Andre Drummond, whom Enoch’s High Rise Team Up AAU coach George Matthews has coached since he was 11.

“He’s someone I look up to,” Enoch said of Drummond. “I don’t get to see him often, because he’s always on the grind. But every time I see him it’s like family. I make the most of every time we hang out, whether it’s him giving me good tips and mentoring on and off the court, or getting scraped in a 1-on-1.”

{  Quotes provided from July 7th article by David Borges – New Haven Register }





Connecticut offers 5-star sg Malik Beasley (#24/#48)





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