Samarie Walker, a 6-foot-1 guard out of Dayton, Ohio, gave the Huskies her verbal commitment Friday at First Night. She told me over the phone today that her verbal came earlier than expected, which was a pleasant surprise to coach Geno Auriemma.
She averaged 13.9 points per game as a sophomore and was ranked the top player in this year's junior class. That means if you go back, the Huskies have nabbed four of the last five top players in their class — Tina Charles, Maya Moore, Elena Delle Donne (who is now at Delaware) and Walker.
“It’s really a dream come true,” Walker said. “I always watched Maya Moore during her junior and senior years thinking, ‘I’m going to play with her,’ and I’m actually going to get the chance to.”
In picking UConn over Rutgers, Walker said that the players at the other schools she considered were not as laid back as the Huskies.
“They really remind me of the girls that I’m close to on my team,” she said. “They really welcomed me and the coaching staff was a lot different than what I thought they would be, very cool people.”
Walker plays at the same high school that produced former Husky Tamika (Williams) Raymond. The two spoke last week with Raymond raving about her time at Storrs.
A converted guard, Walker can post up her defender (scary) and shoot from the outside (scarier). Husky fans, I'll let your imagination run wild when you think of the lineup possibilities.
Let's just project a little at what the Huskies are looking like down the road with graduation year listed.
UConn's going to need some post players, besides Heather Buck. It's not a knock against Heather, but one post does not make an inside game.