USC Women's Basketball

No. 1! Dawn Staley, South Carolina rise to new heights in recruiting rankings

With the addition of yet another top-rated recruit, South Carolina women’s basketball accomplished something it’s never done before on Thursday.

ESPN released updated recruiting rankings for the class of 2019, and for the first time under Dawn Staley, the Gamecocks were No. 1.

The Gamecocks’ top ranked class now includes No. 7 Zia Cooke, No. 10 Laeticia Amihere and No. 13 Brea Beal, as well as preferred walk-on Olivia Thompson. Amihere, a forward from Ontario, Canada, committed and signed with USC on Wednesday, the first day of the early signing period. Beal and Cooke chose the Gamecocks last week.

Or, as ESPN’s Dan Olson simply put it: “It’s been a November to remember for Dawn Staley.”

Staley’s previous top recruiting class was in 2014, with the group that included No. 1 A’ja Wilson. That class included four top-35 prospects, with two in the top 10, and finished ranked No. 2 in the country.

The 2019 class, meanwhile, could get even better still — No. 1 prospect Haley Jones, No. 3 Alyiah Boston and No. 9 Rickea Jackson all have South Carolina among their finalists.