Tiffany Suarez, one of the nation's top combo guards in the 2013 class, decided last Sunday to take her talents to Charlottesville, Va., where she will play for coach Joanne Boyle at Virginia. The 5-foot-10 Suarez brings good size and a diverse skill set to the Cavaliers.
Suarez, of Our Lady of Lourdes Academy (Miami), visited campus on her way home from Boo Williams in April and hinted that her college decision might be made before the July evaluation period got under way. She joins fellow class of 2013 guard Breyana Mason of Woodbridge, Va., as current Virginia verbal commitments. Mason is a scoring lead guard while Suarez is more of a facilitator who can make open shots.
Boyle, who is entering her second year at the helm, also addressed a need at the guard position in the 2012 class by signing three backcourt prospects in Raeshaun Gaffney, Jaryn Garner and Faith Randolph. Two, if not all three, should be in the mix for double-digit minutes as freshmen next season. In the ACC, there is no such thing as a roster filled with too many quality guards.
-- Brandon Clay
New Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico is inheriting a program fresh off an NCAA tournament appearance. Securing her future backcourt was a priority this week, and she got a verbal pledge from Siera Thompson of Gardena, Calif. Thompson is a class of 2013 lead guard ranked No. 53 in the ESPN HoopGurlz Super 60. Our staff watched her make quality play after quality play in leading her Cal Sparks team to the West Coast Invitational title in mid-May. The 5-7 guard brings a combination of leadership at the point guard position and the ability to get downhill off the bounce to create scoring opportunities for herself and her teammates. Thompson joins University of North Carolina transfer guard Shannon Smith, who also committed to Michigan this week, as potential backcourt threats for the Wolverines starting in the fall of 2013.
Kaela Davis of Buford, Ga., the No. 2 player in the class of 2013, will make a trip to Los Angeles on Tuesday for an unofficial visit with the UCLA coaching staff. Davis, who de-committed from Tennessee in late January, will spend a day touring the campus and getting to know the UCLA coaching staff. To date, the 6-2 guard has made local unofficial trips to Georgia and Georgia Tech, but plans to visit other schools in the upcoming months as she begins to gather information about her potential school of choice. Davis' visit is a big step for UCLA as it attempts to put its 2013 recruiting class together. In addition to some prospects on the West Coast, UCLA is targeting a couple select players on the other side of the country. The momentum of an unofficial visit from a top prospect such as Davis may help the Bruins jump start this class.
Faith Woodard of Brandon, Fla., made a trip to South Carolina for an unofficial visit on Monday after playing in the Elite Basketball Academy Super 64 Camp. Woodard, who has had an excellent spring playing in tournaments and events throughout the eastern part of the country, would be an excellent addition for Dawn Staley. Woodard is a 6-2 prospect with tremendous upside and the ability to play both forward spots at the next level. Currently, South Carolina has a need for athletic forwards, and the potential addition of a prospect with Woodard's ability would be an excellent start to its 2013 recruiting class.
-- Keil Moore