We are fully immersed in the 2023 spring/summer club basketball season. The women’s basketball recruits have had two live periods, one in April and one in May, where college coaches were able to attend events to evaluate and recruit their top targets in the classes of 2024, 2025 and 2026.
The class of 2024 has been able to take official recruiting visits since Jan. 1, and many have started that process. Approximately 30% of the 2024 class has made verbal commitments.
June 1 was the first day college coaches could contact the class of 2025 directly, so their phones likely have been busy as well.
We observed the three shoe circuits — Adidas 3SSB, Nike EYBL and Under Armour’s UA Next — as well as the independent Select 40. Events such as the Heart of Texas, the Atlantic City Showcase, The Clash in Cincinnati, Live! at the Nook in Pennsylvania and Live! at Lakepoint in Atlanta all hosted hundreds of players and programs from around the country during the April and May NCAA evaluation weekends.
We also have been on site for non-live events such as The Prime Event series (Dallas, Indianapolis and Birmingham with Sacramento and Pennsylvania to come in June) as well as the U16 USA Basketball trials over Memorial Day weekend.
Our rankings update sees the class of 2024 expand to 100 and the class of 2025 to 60, and we share the initial top 25 in the 2026 class. Here are some of the discussion topics from this update.
Edwards, a 6-foot-3 forward, fills all categories of the stat sheet and takes over the No. 1 ranking for the 2024 class. Supremely skilled around the rim and nearly impossible to keep off the glass, she has expanded her game by becoming a consistent threat from the 3-point line. She is one of those hybrid-forward athletes who can be physical in traffic but smooth on her drives and, with her advanced agility, finishing at the rim. Defensively, she can guard multiple positions from inside to the perimeter with her length and ability to move laterally. She takes over the top spot simply because there is not another in the class like her, and her production is undeniable.
The battle for No. 1 is looking like it is going to come down to Edwards, who resides in South Carolina, and Sarah Strong of North Carolina. Strong has every opportunity to compete for that consideration as her team embarks on a challenging summer schedule and beyond. She will be participating in the highly anticipated Adidas Eurocamp in Treviso, Italy, in June.
Edwards recently made the USA Basketball squad that will compete in 2023 FIBA U19 Women’s World Cup from July 15 to 23 in Madrid. Joyce and her family prefer to keep her recruitment private but know it is high level and intense.
Chavez is known coast to coast for her flair, playmaking and ability to knock down long-range shots. The 5-9 guard excels in transition as she is a threat soon after she crosses half court. Defenders must react to her hesitations, which allow her to create space with superb footwork as she gets to her spots. She plays with a confidence not many in her class can carry. Whether it is the various all-star games, the EYBL or high school basketball, crowds show up to watch her play.
Right now, this looks like a three-player race for No. 1 with Jazzy Davidson from Oregon and Zakiyah Johnson from Kentucky, but let’s see how the rest of the summer plays out.
Chavez is known for her work ethic and time spent in the gym. She is being recruited by schools all over the country and has offers from any and all high-level programs. She has not narrowed her recruitment list at this time.
Robinson (Desert Vista HS, Arizona) debuts at No. 1. The 6-foot guard broke out last summer competing on the 17U level and has continued that success. Still just 14, her strength and physical ability help her compete among players years older.
She inserted herself aggressively while she stuffed the stat sheet this high school season, leading Desert Vista to a state championship and an invite to the State Champions Invitational on ESPN networks. She has a fundamental base of skills to go along with her physical gifts. Her pull-up jumper and relentless attack of the rim has set her apart. She is able to play at the lead guard position as well, and that versatility helped her earn one of 12 spots on the U16 USA Basketball team that will compete in Mexico in June.
Robinson plays for Team Why Not in the EYBL during the summer. In her latest EYBL stop in Phoenix, Robinson led that portion of the league in overall C-RAM, the analytic grading metric used by Cerebro Sports to compare and evaluate players. She averaged 20.2 points, 8.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game.
As can be expected, she has offers from programs all over the country and every major conference.
McDaniel jumped from No. 18 to No. 11 in these latest rankings. She is one of the elite lead guards in the country. Her relentless style leaves a physical impression. She excels in transition, and often opponents must commit two bodies — one primary defender and one help defender — to slow her down. The improvements she has shown in the past few months are in her perimeter shooting consistency and decision-making. Always one to attack the basket, McDaniel has found the value in getting on two feet before help arrives to distribute and create for teammates. At the historical Boo Williams event in Virginia this year, she averaged 15.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists. At the Dallas EYBL stop in May, she increased those averages to 19.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists, and she was second in the overall Cerebro Sports C-RAM grading metric.
Zania Socka-Nguemen Sidwell Friends (D.C.) Team Durant
Socka-Nguemen plays with an activity level that has her in the discussion as the highest stock-riser of the class in the spring. She has always been a major presence in the paint and played hard, but she has started to couple that intensity and motor with better finishing skills. At the latest EYBL stop, she averaged 13.8 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.8 blocks. She changes shots in the paint, attacks the glass and is there for the dump-off pass and finish. The scary thing is there possibly is more potential to be realized in her game with added post moves and even more face-up game.
The 5-11 Howell is a guard who brings a competitiveness to the floor, is vocal and brings the leadership intangible. Howell has a fundamental handle and knows how to get to the paint for a variety of finishes or drawing fouls. She is a threat from the 3, although her stock will continue to rise with more consistency there. In the Adidas 3SSB stop in May, she averaged 19.3 points per game and had college coaches buzzing. She enters at the No. 45 spot.
McGaughy’s recruitment has blown up over the spring. Mentions of her play started to gain steam during the high school season in mostly regional circles. However, film of her ability caught fire in the spring, and there has been no looking back.
The 6-2 forward is comfortable all over the floor. The combination of her strong frame, overall skill, power and jumping ability make her a rare find. She can handle the ball and will surprise you with her right-to-left shake to create space. She is a knock-down 3-point shooter and at the latest Adidas 3SSB stop in May, averaged 16.3 points and shot 50% from 3. She really rises to finish and has a high release on her shot, allowing her to get it off against size and quality defenders. She made a couple plays to finish lob passes out of a backdoor play her team runs that had the whole gym reacting in awe. McGaughy storms in at No. 15 in the national 2025 class.
Emilee Skinner Ridgeline High (Utah) Utah Lady Prospects
Skinner is a leader and a point guard, and she carries herself as such. She brings a seriousness and maturity to the court. Skinner is gritty and tough and plays to win — evidenced by her focus and intensity on both ends of the floor. She is in attack mode with the ball in her hands, creates shots for others and ignites the offense better than most in the class. As a 6-foot true point guard, her skills are valuable and her size and length add even more value. She debuts at No. 21.
Her recruitment includes Utah, BYU, Texas A&M, Arizona, SMU, USC, UCLA, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, Louisville, Oregon State, Cal, Duke and Oklahoma.
Journee Houston Davenport North High (Iowa) All Iowa Attack
Houston is a 5-11 wing/forward who plays an all-around game. Her poise keeps her from being sped up, allowing her to make the simple and fundamental — yet very effective — plays that lead to her success. She has an easy stroke from 3 with a quick shot prep and release. She has filled the stat sheet at her two EYBL stops. At the Boo Williams event, she was fourth in overall Cerebro Sports C-RAM, averaging 14.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists while shooting 45.5% from 3 and having an overall true shooting percentage of 68.8%.
Her offers include: Iowa, Iowa State, DePaul and Michigan.
USA Basketball U16 trials and the class of 2026
The U16 USA Basketball trials featured 21 of the top 25 players in the class of 2026, so the evaluation opportunity for this class was extremely valuable. This class has some serious length, skills and physical ability. Here are some of those players who left an impression and where they debut in the ranks:
Edwards created a buzz from the jump during the trials. She glides up and down the court. One minute she is ferociously ripping down a rebound and in the next she is knocking down a corner 3 with a sweet, simple stroke. She finishes well with both hands around the rim and elevates with the best of them. She has a very high ceiling in terms of her potential.
Her offers include: UCLA, Arizona State, Ohio State, Washington, Maryland, Louisville, Kentucky, North Carolina, Oklahoma and USC.
No. 6 Trinity Jones Naperville Central High (Ill.) Mac Irvin Lady Fire
Jones, who was selected for the U16 USAB team, gets up and down the court as fast as anyone in the country in any class. In terms of speed, explosiveness and jumping ability, she truly is elite. First getting on our radar at the end of last summer, she has worked hard and refined her skills. She is hitting 3-point shots, knocking down pull-up jumpers and finishing up near the rim with either hand and a variety of footwork. Defensively, she is a terror in passing lanes and blocks shots with authority, sometimes surprising opponents with how quick she rotates and leaps to get a hand on the ball. The potential here is huge.
Bjorn, who also was named to the U16 USAB squad, is the total package. She is super skilled and confident on the floor. She has superb ballhandling skills and can really stretch the floor with her shooting. She does a great job with her footwork on finishes and knows when to utilize the euro-step or get on two feet. She is lengthy and bouncy, so she is rim level as she finishes layups. Among the more outstanding parts of her game is her floor vision — she passes with an entertaining flair at times.
Her recent offers include Stanford, Ole Miss, Colorado, Maryland, Ohio State, Pitt, Baylor and Purdue.
Next up: Class of 2027 and 2028
Usually, it is a bit early to mention any players before they hit the high school level of basketball, but because these three participated in the elite USA Basketball trials recently, we will make an exception.
Jordyn Palmer Westtown School (Penn.) Philly Rise
Palmer is a 6-1 forward who really made a name for herself this season playing varsity basketball for head coach Fran Burbidge and Westtown School. She is a strong, powerful and explosive athlete who has a maturity to her game beyond her years. She has a cool demeanor and the game to go with it — 3-ball, pull-up jumper and finishes at the rim against contact. She rebounds well and already adds some physicality. Palmer reads the floor well and makes poised decisions — maybe her most outstanding trait.
Haylen Ayers University School of Jackson (Tenn.) Tennessee Flight
Ayers first caught my eye at Boo Williams last year playing in the 16U division. Fast forward to this year and she might have been the player who had the most of my focus as she debuted on the 17U level. A 6-foot guard, she has a savviness to her game that not many have — at any level of high school. She shows subtleties and IQ of a much older player. She doesn’t need much space to get her shot off and knows how to hunt it or create it. I love how her eyes are always up and that she can make any pass needed on time.
Sydney Douglas Ontario Christian (Calif.) Cal Storm
Douglas is the 6-5 middle schooler who has everyone talking. Do not just chalk that up to her height, however. She plays with a high level of skill and footwork. She is patient in her post touches and methodical as she makes moves. She is comfortable away from the rim but knows her money is made in the paint right now — which is very impressive. She has some major potential.