When the Huskies face Boston University Friday they will do so with only one freshman on scholarship: Saniya Chong. That's by design; UConn's roster is filled with All-Americans and high school players of the year, and there was little need for a deep 2013 recruiting class. Next year, however, will be different.
The Huskies will welcome three guards -- Courtney Ekmark, Sadie Edwards and Gabby Williams -- and now that they have all signed their letters of intent, coach Geno Auriemma was able to talk about the players for the first time.
“Getting the players we have gotten is perfect for us, considering how our roster has shaken out at guard, and will continue to, over the next few years,” said Auriemma, via the Hartford Courant. “We lost Caroline Doty and Kelly Faris, next year we lose Bria Hartley and eventually Moriah Jefferson [after the 2015-16] season.
“This class addresses an immediate need that we have. We do have other needs. But if the way this group of players compliments what they do, as individuals, and what we do as a group, it’s going to be great. And not one of them is identical to the other, which is something we try to stay away from. We don’t want to recruit similar players; that’s when you run into problems.”
Auriemma also thinks that one or more of the players could follow in the footsteps of Faris or Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and play small forward if needed.
I don’t think Kelly or Kaleena came out of high schools as anything but guards,” he said. “The fact that Courtney and Gabby are 6 feet means there is no reason either of them couldn’t eventually do the same for us as those players once did. The way we use our players is, it might look like a mismatch, but I always feel like it’s a mismatch in our favor."
Kia Nurse is also a member of the 2014 class but her paperwork has yet to verified by the school so Auriemma wasn't at liberty to speak about what she adds to the program. But Nurse, who hails from Ontario, Canada, shows that the Huskies' success makes them not only a national powerhouse, but internationally recognized.
Ideally, Auriemma would add one more name to next year's class: A'ja Wilson, the nation's top-ranked recruit. She visited Storrs last month but there appears to be no timetable on when she will announce her college plans.