Commentary

Early Volunteer

Lauren Avant deals with the pressure of an early commit to the Lady Vols.

Originally Published: September 11, 2008
By Glenn Nelson | ESPN HoopGurlz

Lauren AvantGlenn Nelson, ESPN Lauren Avant committed to the Lady Vols as an eighth grader.

Lauren Avant has proven herself to be a young person who knows what she wants, and goes after it. The No. 4 prospect in the ESPN HoopGurlz Super Sixty for 2010, and top-ranked point guard, the Memphis, Tenn., product knew she wanted to stay in-state and play college basketball at the University of Tennessee. So she committed to Pat Summitt.

Avant was an eighth grader when she did.

We caught up with Avant this summer at the AAU 15U National Championships in West Chester, Ohio. The 5-foot-9 lead guard was not far removed from a bout with mononucleosis and the thumb on both of her hands were badly mangled. Still, she helped Memphis Elite claim the national title. Before that, she explained the rationale behind her commitment and the ramifications - good and bad - of that decision.

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Glenn Nelson is a senior writer at ESPN.com and the founder of HoopGurlz.com. A member of the McDonald's All-American and Parade All-American Selection Committees, he formerly coached girls club basketball, was the editor-in-chief of an online sports network, and was a longtime, national-award-winning newspaper columnist and writer. He can be reached at glenn@hoopgurlz.com.

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