Just back from the Michigan women's basketball team's first-ever foreign trip (see this page for details), Kim Barnes Arico and her staff got a tremendous piece of news: the verbal commitment of Katelynn Flaherty, a 5-7 point guard from New Jersey who's ranked #19, #23, #25, and #34 nationally in the 2014 class by four major recruiting services.
In a "player to watch" profile" MSGVarsity said this about Flaherty:
Few are as effective attacking the rim than the Garnet Gulls’ elusive 5-7 point guard. The ease in which she shifts gears on the fly and renders defenders helpless to her sudden bursts is the kind of attribute that drives her fearlessly through the lane for either a layup, a trip to the foul line (where she shot 93 percent as a junior) or slick dish to the opposite block. However, when opponents choose to congest the paint to impede that path, Flaherty displays an adaptability that hints at her inquisitive basketball IQ.
The smooth release on her jumper overshadows the nimble footwork which creates the necessary space to let it fly. With her excellent combination of adhesive handle and jab steps, Flaherty builds room for herself to stick a long-range 3-pointer, showing she can bury a trey as effortlessly off the dribble as she does catching and shooting on the kickout.
Flaherty, who made an unofficial visit to Michigan a couple weeks ago, was considering offers from a number of major programs in women's hoops, including Georgia, Kentucky, Louisville, Ole Miss, Vanderbilt, and Virginia Tech.
Have to give an assist to John Beilein here (see the tweet/photo in the first reply), and Jabrill Peppers may have helped out as well as Peppers and Flaherty recently began following each other on Twitter.
This is a huge commitment, with the 2014 class shaping up to be one of the best—if not the best—in program history. Flaherty, Maria Backman, and Jillian Dunston make up the class so far (see the women's hoops recruiting board for full details), and the coaches are in the running for some other major prospects. Michigan is a finalist for 5-8 combo guard Arica Carter out of California and 6-1 forward Cayla McMorris out of Minnesota, and they appear to have legitimate shots at a handful of others.