The 2023 national champion LSU Tigers just added a two-time ACC All-First team player who averaged 19.7 points per game last year. Women’s college basketball fans, welcome to your newest super team era.
Hailey Van Lith announced her transfer on Thursday after being listed as a “do not contact” prospect. She knew where she wanted to go, and made her choice quickly.
Most Outstanding Player Angel Reese tweeted a cryptic emoji on the day Van Lith officially visited campus, and that all but assured what was to come.
It’s important to note that Baylor, the program LSU coach Kim Mulkey led at the time, was in Van Lith’s final two schools before she ultimately chose Louisville. This pairing was a long time coming.
Well, they're now the favorite to win it all. That's what happens when you replace star guard Alexis Morris, who left for the WNBA, with one of the best players on the transfer market.
Van Lith is sure to start right away and run the Tigers' offense. Of course that means getting the ball into the hands of star Angel Reese in the post, and kicking out to shooters like Flau'jae Johnson. Van Lith averaged a career-best 3.2 assists last season for Louisville, though she was heavily relied on as a volume shooter and scorer. You can expect her passing numbers to climb with the depth of talent she'll be surrounded by.
The LSU Tigers are *really* going to be a threat to repeat. Virtually nobody outside of Baton Rouge had them winning this season, but restocking with Van Lith makes them a sure-fire favorite to start the next one.
Other super teams exist and will be tough outs. UConn will return Paige Bueckers alongside Azzi Fudd and Aaliyah Edwards. Iowa still has Caitlin Clark. Notre Dame will get Olivia Miles back alongside Sonia Citron. UCLA has assembled a solid team of its own by getting Charisma Osborne to remain for another season with Kiki Rice and Stanford transfer Lauren Betts. Elizabeth Kitley and Georgia Amoore are running it back for Virginia Tech. Jacy Sheldon returns to Ohio State alongside rising star Cotie McMahon and big-time Duke transfer Celeste Taylor.
And then there's the big one... the impending commitment of arguably the best transfer on the market: DePaul's Aneesah Morrow, who averaged 25.7 points and 12.2 rebounds. Her final list right now: South Carolina, USC, and you guessed it, LSU.
The Tigers could even get stronger.