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Staley lands another top-10 recruit

When Kayla Brewer brings her "A" game, she does not limit it to the basketball court.

Brewer, one of the nation's top recruits, committed to South Carolina this past weekend during a visit to Columbia. The 6-foot-2 forward from Jacksonville, Fla., plans to graduate from high school a year early and enroll at USC this summer.

Brewer should be considered a junior academically by the fall and hopes to be enrolled in USC's law school during her final two seasons of eligibility.

"That's the plan," Brewer said Tuesday during a phone interview. "No time wasted."

ESPNU ranks Brewer the No. 8 prospect in the class of 2011 (although she will be part of the '10 class after signing with the Gamecocks in April).

Brewer averaged 15 points, 14 rebounds and 6.7 blocks a game this season at Robert E. Lee High after transferring from another Jacksonville school. Just as impressive are the numbers she has put up in the classroom: Brewer carries a 4.5 GPA on a weighted scale.

"That just tells you where she is academically," said Lee coach Derrell Johnson, who refers to Brewer as an "athletic nerd."

"I'm pretty competitive in everything I do, not just basketball," Brewer said. "I like to challenge myself."

Brewer heard from nearly every major school in the country, including a number of SEC programs. Stanford recruited her but does not offer the sport and entertainment management major Brewer plans to study with the goal of becoming a sports and entertainment attorney.

Brewer said USC offers the "best of both worlds" - her planned field of study and a program on the rise in Dawn Staley's second season.

"Coach Dawn is making big moves and taking big steps, and I feel like soon we'll probably be a top team in the country," Brewer said. "I see it as a challenge that we can come together and do it."

Brewer said she met USC freshman center Kelsey Bone, who was ESPNU's No. 2 recruit last year, several years ago at an LSU basketball camp.

"I'm a big fan of hers," said Brewer, who hopes to play one of the forward spots at USC so she and Bone can be on the floor at the same time.

In Lee's recent playoff loss to Gainesville, Brewer had to assume more ball-handling responsibilities after two of the team's guards were injured.

"She can play the wing. She played inside-out for us," Johnson said. "She's athletic enough that she can handle the ball."

Brewer is confident she can handle college life as well, despite making the transition a year earlier than her classmates.

"I think I'm prepared for it. I'm ready for it," Brewer said. "I've been on a college campus for two years now."

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