Caris looks like Jax with stuck-on cyborg arms. #campsanderson
Kim Barnes Arico and the Michigan women's basketball program rounded out their terrific 2015 recruiting class with a verbal commitment today from Hallie Thome, a 6-5 center from Chagrin Falls, Ohio (a suburb of Cleveland). Two major ranking services have her in their top 100 for 2015: Blue Star has her at #63 and ASGR at #82 (the latter may be out of date as it's from an October 2013 posting, but it's the most recent public ranking that I know of).
I don't have a recent scouting report to post, mainly because Thome suffered a torn ACL last December and missed the rest of her junior season at Chagrin Falls. During the seven games she played before getting hurt, she averaged 19.8 points, 9.8 rebounds, and 2.7 blocks. She's now back with her AAU team, SMAC, playing with them during last week's evaluation period.
Here's a brief scouting report from Blue Star from back in 2012:
This 6-4 center from Chagrin Falls is becoming one of the best interior players in this class. She can post up and score with a variety of moves including the step thru. The ability is there to use her left and right hand equally well inside. She can rebound and is very mobile. Thome plays physically and can defend her position well.
Thome took her official visit to Michigan back in May. The last I heard she had narrowed it down to U-M, Michigan State, and Louisville, taking official visits to each. There were a bunch of other high-major programs who had pursued her, including Kentucky, Ohio State, Purdue, and Vanderbilt. (EDIT: The News-Herald article linked in a reply includes Kentucky among her finalists, so she likely took an official there as well.)
The Michigan staff has now essentially assembled a full squad in the 2015 class:
- PG: Lauren "Boogie" Brozoski (Hello post)
- SG: Nicole Munger (Hello post)
- W: Naomi Davenport (Hello post)
- F: Sam Trammel (Hello post)
- P: Hallie Thome
All five players are ranked in the top 100 by at least one of the major recruiting services. Blue Star has four of the five in their top 100—Davenport #27, Munger #52, Thome #63, and Brozoski #67—with Trammel at #163. Michigan's 2014 class was consensus top 25; the 2015 class will certainly be ranked even higher. The combination of the two should have Michigan competing for Big Ten titles and advancing further in the NCAA tourney than they ever have.
We learned earlier in the week that C.J. Lee would leave his position as Director of Program Personnel to join (Beilein protégé) Mike Maker at Marist, as Maker's assistant coach. C.J. Lee was in the unique position of watching the program rise from the doldrums of the post-Amaker/Ed Martin era to its current stature.
Today we have an ARTICLE from Brendan Quinn replete with C.J. Lee insights on the program and on Beilein in particular. It's worth your time to read, but here's a quote to whet your appetite, relaying Lee's observations on how Beilein has changed over the years:
“There isn’t a noticeable difference in him, but he says it to me in personal conversations all the time, ‘I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t been willing to change and listen to others,’” Lee replied. “That’s what stands out. He keeps learning and continues to develop, which is crazy. I mean, he’s 61 years old and keeps getting better.”
It will surprise very few here that Beilein was instrumental in getting C.J. in front of Maker for this opportunity.