Recruiting can be an exhausting process for both program and player. Sometimes a kid decides they want to play for you right away, like Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, and sometimes they wait for every to decide and then go someplace else, like Diamond DeShields and Xylina McDaniel, for instance.
But in the case of Louisville’s Sara Hammond, the choice came down to family and her Kentucky roots
“They is no coach I have greater respect for, together than Coach Walz, that Coach Auriemma,” Hammond said Monday. “I could see the look on my parents’ face when it became clear to them that UConn was looking at me. They wanted to watch me play college basketball and I knew being 15 hours away from home [at UConn] that it would have been too hard for them. That’s the main reason I stayed at Louisville. Now they can just drive two hours down the road to see me play.
“Connecticut has a great program. I’ve loved being recruited by Geno Auriemma. It was amazing to know that he wanted me to come up to visit UConn and that they were going offer me a scholarship. But we prayed about it as a family and decided to go where my heart led me.
“But I am happy that I decided to play at Louisville and I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything in my life. It’s amazing how it’s all evolved; now we are playing against UConn for the national championship.”