We’ve done a lot of talking about Marquette men’s basketball recruiting since Shaka Smart was hired as the new head coach over on that side of the McGuire Center. We haven’t really done much talking about women’s basketball recruiting, but that’s a “things have to happen” situation to a certain extent.
Well, something happened.
On Thursday, Kamorea Arnold, a top 10 prospect in the Class of 2023, announced her top 12 recruiting list. Since we’re talking about it here, yeah, Marquette and Megan Duffy are on the list. They are joined on the list by Baylor, UConn, Duke, Florida, Kentucky, Louisville, Notre Dame, North Carolina, Ohio State, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.
Thankful for all of the other schools that showed interest in me. This has been one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make . pic.twitter.com/aT1RcnVUiX— Kamorea “KK” Arnold (@Kamorea_2023) July 1, 2021
As mentioned a moment ago, yes, Arnold is a top 10 prospect in the Class of 2023. ESPN is currently ranking her at #6 in the country. Yes. Sixth. Marquette is decently in the running for the #6 prospect in the country. If you prefer Blue Star, well, they have Arnold at #8 in the country. This is largely speaking because one of the first things that Megan Duffy did after being hired at Marquette two years ago is offer Arnold a scholarship while she was still in eighth grade.
If you’re vaguely aware of the fortunes of these various college basketball programs, then you’re probably wondering why Arnold has a team in there that hasn’t seen a winning season since 2011 or an NCAA tournament since 2010. Yes, I am referring to Wisconsin as the odd duck in the bunch, and that is easily explained. Arnolds attends Germantown High School in Germantown, Wisconsin. See, there it is.
The lovely people at WisSports.net have a page for Arnold, and that’s how we know that the 5’9” guard averaged 22.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 5.1 assists, and 3.7 steals per game this past season. The points and assists are tops on the team, while the rebounds and steals are “only” second best. All of this was as a sophomore for Germantown, and it really paid off for the Warhawks and for Arnold herself. Germantown went 29-1, including 14 straight wins to close the season with a Division 1 state title, and Arnold was named Player of the Year in Wisconsin by the AP. That probably helped her get a spot on the United States U16 team for the FIBA Americas Cup in August.
As a top 10 player in the country, Arnold literally can go to college wherever she wants as evidenced by the quality of this top 12 list. It’s safe to say, though, that if she is interested in Marquette, then 1) staying close to home is interesting to her and 2) the idea of slaying the giant instead of joining the giant is also intriguing. Still, there’s a lot of giants on that top 12 list, so we’ll see what happens. It probably won’t happen any time soon, as Arnold isn’t allowed to sign a letter of intent until November 2022 at the earliest.
Scholarship chart time!
Marquette projects to have four scholarships opening up for the fall of 2023 right now. That could change as the 2022-23 seniors would be allowed to take a COVID-bonus season but still count towards the scholarship limit, but that’s a decision for down the line. Duffy is also looking at three open spots on the roster for the fall of 2022 next to Emily La Chapell, who was offered a scholarship right around the same time as Arnold as coincidence has it. MU doesn’t really have to fill any of those spots as the roster projects to have 12 women on it right now, but it’s also beneficial to have freshmen getting their feet wet alongside four seniors.
The point of the story is that Marquette could be looking to fill even more than four scholarships when 2023 rolls around. The more empty space on the roster, the bigger deal it would be to bring in a top 10 prospect to make an immediate impact.