Lady Vols don't land Diamond DeShields

A flurry of women's basketball recruiting activity on Saturday thwarted Tennessee's ongoing efforts regarding the Class of 2013.

Diamond DeShields, a 6-foot-2 forward from Norcross, Ga., informed Lady Vols new head coach Holly Warlick that she had committed to North Carolina. DeShields was one of the prized prospects of the class, ranked No. 3 overall by ESPN HoopGurlz. Along with UT, Connecticut, Maryland and Duke were the finalists for DeShields.

Her decision led a banner day for North Carolina, which failed to make the NCAA tournament this season. Forward Stephanie Mavunga, wing Allisha Gray and point guard Jessica Washington also committed to the Tar Heels.

UT was among the final five choices for Gray, who was ranked No. 8 in the class.

Mavunga, a 6-3 forward from Indianapolis, also was being recruited by the Lady Vols. She was ranked No. 15 in the class by HoopGurlz. She's a good friend of center Mercedes Russell of Springfield, Ore., who's ranked No. 1 and is one of UT's top recruiting priorities .

Bill Wagner, Russell's high school coach, said via text message Saturday that he thinks Russell will make her official visits before deciding. But he conceded that Mavunga's decision could impact Russell.

Meanwhile, Wilka Montout, a 6-5 center from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M, has signed with South Carolina.

Tennessee recruited Montout but couldn't get the junior college player to visit.

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Comments » 54

movol53 writes:

Can only hope this is a "hick up" and NOT a trend.

tovolny writes:

It will take awhile for Holly to get her sea legs, but the history and facts of the matter convince me that Holly will soon be piloting the biggest ship floating and cruising the mighty briny. The SS Big Orange will soon again be ruling women's basketball. I for one feel confident to remain aboard. Holy knows several ways to the National Championship land and will steer us to the treasures. Young ladies wanting to share the bounty better get on board now...the ship is being loaded fast and will be leaving their ports in a hurry. Holly knows, I tell you, Holly knows......... Whoaaaaooohhh there she blows, missy, TOO LATE!

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

Is this the daughter of Delino DeShields?

On the other hand, sucks that we missed on all three of these girls. However, they all went to the same place which IMO doesn't make it as bad. Perhaps they just felt comfortable together, and with the school. After that all it takes is for one to commit. If we would have lost all 3 to different schools, it would worry me a bit more. However, this can't happen much more. We need to bag atleast 1 top 10 recruit and a couple top 25 to go with it.

Is it me, or did UNC just hit the mother load?!?!

Pullingguard writes:

Vols have good staff and have hired some really good asst.coach's who are good recruiters. Now, we should expect some bumps in the road, for Pat was a holy name in the womens college basketball world, so be patient for time being, things will pick up.

RoadTrip writes:

Let's get real here. This is the way it is going to go so prepare for it. They came because of Pat and the very best stopped coming a few years ago. No Final Fours since Parker, remember? Can't blame them. The system they run and player mix is dated. Now the legend is done. Yet, the UTAD chose to retain the status quo.

kazoo writes:

in response to tovolny:

It will take awhile for Holly to get her sea legs, but the history and facts of the matter convince me that Holly will soon be piloting the biggest ship floating and cruising the mighty briny. The SS Big Orange will soon again be ruling women's basketball. I for one feel confident to remain aboard. Holy knows several ways to the National Championship land and will steer us to the treasures. Young ladies wanting to share the bounty better get on board now...the ship is being loaded fast and will be leaving their ports in a hurry. Holly knows, I tell you, Holly knows......... Whoaaaaooohhh there she blows, missy, TOO LATE!

I hope you are right--but I very much doubt it. First, the Vols simply haven't been great for four years--no final fours. Mojo has been lost. Second, Summitt is gone, and she is the reason UT got so many recruits. Warlick is a veteran assistant and not really someone whom recruits are especially eager to play for. Not a knock on Holly--just the way it is. Maybe our two new assistants will make a difference, let's hope so--but I fear UT's days of dominance are over. In fact, I think they've been over for a while.

Ironcity writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

Is this the daughter of Delino DeShields?

On the other hand, sucks that we missed on all three of these girls. However, they all went to the same place which IMO doesn't make it as bad. Perhaps they just felt comfortable together, and with the school. After that all it takes is for one to commit. If we would have lost all 3 to different schools, it would worry me a bit more. However, this can't happen much more. We need to bag atleast 1 top 10 recruit and a couple top 25 to go with it.

Is it me, or did UNC just hit the mother load?!?!

That is Delinos daughter.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

Thanks Iron.

Theo writes:

The good news is she didn't go to Connecticut. Interesting that they went to a school coming off a horrible year. I've always liked Sylvia Hatchell (sp). Always pull for NC over the new Duke coach (yuck-sleazy). Elzy and Law have only been on the case a week. Let's see how it works out from here. I still don't understand why some says Davis will not consider UT. Her mother certainly didn't sound that way and I think Candace Parker would encourage her to come to UT. Anyway, a lot of fish in the sea.

VAvolfanRON writes:

wishing you the best Diamond...would have loved to see you in orange, but your decision was what you wanted.....for you i say, bleed blue

JimmyJoe writes:

Uh Candace is not allowed to recruit that would be a violation. I think this is going to be a pretty common occurrence
around here...rocky top aint all that attractive if your not coming to play for a legend.... No offense there Holly.

Ttown writes:

Down we go

ladyvolcp3 writes:

We jus missed out on Alisha gray as well has committed to UNC as well.....holly need to turn it around or UT will not be UT anymore and all that pat has built would be for nothing.

richvol writes:

Strike two...

maxvolfan#217855 writes:

Well my dream of DDeshields is what it was .. a dream. I'm just glad she didn't go to Uconn.

GreerVol22 writes:

so goes the coach so goes the recruiting. UT will still be on most top recruits list for a while but without a certain tall thin lady UT will become just another school...starting to sound like a trend.

SummittsCourt writes:

Tough blow for sure. The women's team will go through a down trend for a couple of years unless Coach Warlick can have some great success over the next 2 years in my opinion.

I understand the decision to hire her, I just don't agree with it fully. I hope I am wrong but I'm not convinced she is head coach material and last season didn't do anything to prove me wrong.

AD Hart should have gone after Dawn Staley!

Chris_in_Maine writes:

UNC has 13 recruits in the 12 and 13 classes. With a limit of 15 scholarships, and returning players How is this doable?

HanQ7 writes:

Early on I wasnt nervous, but now I'm nervous. I think the staff needs to be pushing for Russell, Greenwell and Davis big time! I thought for certain Gray was coming to TENN. I guess everybody was waiting for DeShields to commit, it seems like they had that planned. UNC is about to have a squad for years to come. I'm in serious prayer for my beloved Lady Vol program.

Legoo Lady Vols staff go get these young ladies!

tovolny writes:

CHEER UP PEOPLE! Think of it this way: "how would you like an assistant coach that has been around THEE BEST coach ever" coming to your school...?" (OR) What about an assistant coach that has been at a losing program for about 10 years...?...COME ON, drop the negative waves. Notice I spelled "the" with two "E's" for some added respect.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

Is this the daughter of Delino DeShields?

On the other hand, sucks that we missed on all three of these girls. However, they all went to the same place which IMO doesn't make it as bad. Perhaps they just felt comfortable together, and with the school. After that all it takes is for one to commit. If we would have lost all 3 to different schools, it would worry me a bit more. However, this can't happen much more. We need to bag atleast 1 top 10 recruit and a couple top 25 to go with it.

Is it me, or did UNC just hit the mother load?!?!

Just what I was thinking..Perhaps the softball team should recruit her..Just sayin'

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to SummittsCourt:

Tough blow for sure. The women's team will go through a down trend for a couple of years unless Coach Warlick can have some great success over the next 2 years in my opinion.

I understand the decision to hire her, I just don't agree with it fully. I hope I am wrong but I'm not convinced she is head coach material and last season didn't do anything to prove me wrong.

AD Hart should have gone after Dawn Staley!

Got to agree, Staley or Peck..I'm not sure Hart is as invested in women's sports as Cronin was, but he's definitely got a plan..GBO!

volfan2002 writes:

in response to Chris_in_Maine:

UNC has 13 recruits in the 12 and 13 classes. With a limit of 15 scholarships, and returning players How is this doable?

They are gonna have to kick three or four players to the curb. This is the same as oversigning in football. They commit better players and send the ones they gave scholarships to before home. Alabama in the WCB has just happened.

wagee12 writes:

Might as well get used to it. Handing the program to WarLICK was a monumental mistake and what happened yesterday is no anomoly. Word to Kellie Jolly Harper and Nikki Caldwell, keep honing your head coaching skills, you will be called on to rebuild Tennessee women's basketball in the next two to three years.

SoddyVol writes:

It never ends: The connection, albeit small; UNC coach Hatchell coached a junior varsity team under Pat Summitt at Tennessee. She earned her Masters at Tennessee. With those Ladies UNC may quickly be a contender for the crown.

OrangeBloodFlood writes:

in response to SummittsCourt:

Tough blow for sure. The women's team will go through a down trend for a couple of years unless Coach Warlick can have some great success over the next 2 years in my opinion.

I understand the decision to hire her, I just don't agree with it fully. I hope I am wrong but I'm not convinced she is head coach material and last season didn't do anything to prove me wrong.

AD Hart should have gone after Dawn Staley!

At last someone who agrees that Dawn Staley would have been the best choice to take over the Lady Vols if we want to return to the "Rocky Top".Her system appeals to todays young women and she coaches the way she played....hard!
I appreciate the contribution Holly has made especially being a former player,so thus an opportunity.The recruiting news does not speak well though.We may have to find out what kind of "backbone" R.H. has!

volfan73120#211815 writes:

in response to kazoo:

I hope you are right--but I very much doubt it. First, the Vols simply haven't been great for four years--no final fours. Mojo has been lost. Second, Summitt is gone, and she is the reason UT got so many recruits. Warlick is a veteran assistant and not really someone whom recruits are especially eager to play for. Not a knock on Holly--just the way it is. Maybe our two new assistants will make a difference, let's hope so--but I fear UT's days of dominance are over. In fact, I think they've been over for a while.

Kazoo, You are the most negative blogger on this site. Everyone knows your feelings, so why keep boring them by saying the same thing over and over again. Get yourself a new mantra.

madrigal writes:

I think prospective recruits are going to be a little cautious for awhile until they see how the team does under Holly. That's usually what happens when there's a radical coaching change. I know patience is a foreign attitude to a lot of you, but let's just wait and see.

charlyand#601962 writes:

in response to Pullingguard:

Vols have good staff and have hired some really good asst.coach's who are good recruiters. Now, we should expect some bumps in the road, for Pat was a holy name in the womens college basketball world, so be patient for time being, things will pick up.

You are so right. I'm excited about the new assistants and will always love the Lady Vols!

Theo writes:

in response to madrigal:

I think prospective recruits are going to be a little cautious for awhile until they see how the team does under Holly. That's usually what happens when there's a radical coaching change. I know patience is a foreign attitude to a lot of you, but let's just wait and see.

Think you've got some good points. I, however, am also very excited about what Coaches Elzy and Law are going to do on the recruiting trail. Let's hang tough for a few months. I think we'll ge fine.

wagee12 writes:

Haw, haw, you won't be excited about this staff for very long. Also, to the poster above who mentioned to wait and see how Hollwee does, she was the head game coach this year, how'd that work out? Terrible choice by the administration and it's going to be bad or even worse. While teams like Kentucky, South Carolina and Arkansas are on the rise, Tennessee slips badly with WarLICK at the helm.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to wagee12:

Haw, haw, you won't be excited about this staff for very long. Also, to the poster above who mentioned to wait and see how Hollwee does, she was the head game coach this year, how'd that work out? Terrible choice by the administration and it's going to be bad or even worse. While teams like Kentucky, South Carolina and Arkansas are on the rise, Tennessee slips badly with WarLICK at the helm.

You may be right, and if you are UT will replace her in 2-3 seasons..Next.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to wagee12:

Haw, haw, you won't be excited about this staff for very long. Also, to the poster above who mentioned to wait and see how Hollwee does, she was the head game coach this year, how'd that work out? Terrible choice by the administration and it's going to be bad or even worse. While teams like Kentucky, South Carolina and Arkansas are on the rise, Tennessee slips badly with WarLICK at the helm.

You may be right, and if you are UT will replace her in 2-3 seasons..Next.

Theo writes:

in response to wagee12:

Haw, haw, you won't be excited about this staff for very long. Also, to the poster above who mentioned to wait and see how Hollwee does, she was the head game coach this year, how'd that work out? Terrible choice by the administration and it's going to be bad or even worse. While teams like Kentucky, South Carolina and Arkansas are on the rise, Tennessee slips badly with WarLICK at the helm.

Sounds like you have a personal problem with Coach Warlick. Why don't you leave this site and never come back. Your personal issues are of no interest to anyone here.

SoddyVol writes:

I'm very encouraged knowing this years freshmen got to play with GloJo. I'm somewhat encouraged as they also played with Stricklen, have Elzy as assistant coach, and Holly in now if full charge??? of the team. I hope my gut feeling is wrong but because Pat was so strong and had so much pull, it could be there is just a little resentment and now that she stepped down, the Men overseeing athletics at UT will not let Holly have enough freedom to do whats needed for the program to excel.

RLL59 writes:

Hiring Holly was inevitable once it was determined that Coach Summitt would stay on in some capacity. No coach with the seniority and qualifications to take over a top level program like TN would have accepted the job with Coach Summitt lurking in the background. If Holly, as head coach, wants to and does implement new strategies, such as establishing player roles, screening for the scorers, settling on a consistent lineup, and, most importantly, finding a way to reduce the pressure on each player to play flawless basketball or be yanked off the court, she may succeed, If not, the downward trend will continue and within a few years, with Coach Summitt leaving the program voluntarily, a new coach, with full authority, will be hired.

ladyvolcp3 writes:

holly has only been on the job for a month and y'all want her to get every recruit that consider UT wont happen and as far as it was her team last year stop it because it wasn't.

volboy81 writes:

wow! some people panic after Holly's been on the job for 8 seconds!! She wasnt my first choice, but as was stated above, with Summitt still around, she is about the only person who could step into the HC role without it being awkward! There is no way this program can keep from dipping some as Summitt leaves, seeing the icon in coaching that she was, but Holly will do fine...give her a chance!

Mike_In_Storrs_CT writes:

North Carolina is still going to stink no matter who they get..A lot of supposedly great high school players are afraid to come to Uconn. Because even though they were great players in High School, playing at Uconn is a whole other story. Most of these players just are not sure of themselves and their ability. Like Elena Della Donne, and now Deshields..Those two players ruled the the high school game playing against zero competition..But to play at Uconn you have to put all that aside and be a team player against the best competion..Not for everyone..

WCBB_FAN writes:

THE FAB FIVE THEORY

UT didn't land Deshields because she didn't have any intentions of coming to the program in the first place. Diamond basically got all the fans souped up and then dropped the bomb on you guys. UCONN is where she would have chosen , but with her talent being 2nd best behind K. Lewis, B. Stewart,and M. Tuck was too much. DD had a better plan. She picked UNC and persuaded her friends to follow in behind her. Now the question is who get Russell? It sure won't be Tenn. Mercedes will be joining them too.

WCBB_FAN writes:

in response to Mike_In_Storrs_CT:

North Carolina is still going to stink no matter who they get..A lot of supposedly great high school players are afraid to come to Uconn. Because even though they were great players in High School, playing at Uconn is a whole other story. Most of these players just are not sure of themselves and their ability. Like Elena Della Donne, and now Deshields..Those two players ruled the the high school game playing against zero competition..But to play at Uconn you have to put all that aside and be a team player against the best competion..Not for everyone..

Mike, I agree with you. There are other players who are talented as the top 10 recruits. Some of the fans on the Summitt message board are sick at their stomachs. How is Geno doing?

Theo writes:

in response to Mike_In_Storrs_CT:

North Carolina is still going to stink no matter who they get..A lot of supposedly great high school players are afraid to come to Uconn. Because even though they were great players in High School, playing at Uconn is a whole other story. Most of these players just are not sure of themselves and their ability. Like Elena Della Donne, and now Deshields..Those two players ruled the the high school game playing against zero competition..But to play at Uconn you have to put all that aside and be a team player against the best competion..Not for everyone..

Me thinketh the "lady" doth protesteth too much. Hysterical! So since she chose to ignore Geno now she isn't good enough to go freeze her rearend off in God forsaken Connecticut.
And you decided to find salve for your rejection by coming to this site. LMFAO.

Theo writes:

in response to WCBB_FAN:

THE FAB FIVE THEORY

UT didn't land Deshields because she didn't have any intentions of coming to the program in the first place. Diamond basically got all the fans souped up and then dropped the bomb on you guys. UCONN is where she would have chosen , but with her talent being 2nd best behind K. Lewis, B. Stewart,and M. Tuck was too much. DD had a better plan. She picked UNC and persuaded her friends to follow in behind her. Now the question is who get Russell? It sure won't be Tenn. Mercedes will be joining them too.

Not sure you aren't just Nutmeg Mike with a new name but regardless you aren't a WCBB fan - just another Huskiette troll - please see my above response to Mike.
Still LMFAO at you trolls!

OrangeBloodFlood writes:

Dawn Staley signed the 6'5" JC player that we couldn't even get to visit.If you are the new head coach at the best known womens program in the country and you can't even get a JC player to visit.......the most encouragment I have is in the hiring of Kyra Elzy,she was intense as a player and hopefully will be the same as a coach.

ModelMaker writes:

in response to SummittsCourt:

Tough blow for sure. The women's team will go through a down trend for a couple of years unless Coach Warlick can have some great success over the next 2 years in my opinion.

I understand the decision to hire her, I just don't agree with it fully. I hope I am wrong but I'm not convinced she is head coach material and last season didn't do anything to prove me wrong.

AD Hart should have gone after Dawn Staley!

I AGREE. THE FIRST THING YOU HAVE TO HAVE BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE IS A DOMINATE PERSONALITY TO BE A HEAD COACH. WARLICK HAS A PASSIVE PERSONALITY. BESIDES THAT I WAS NOT IMPRESSED WITH THE WAY SHE HANDLED THE PLAYERS LAST YEAR. I THINK HART SHOULD HAVE GONE WITH A BIG NAME COACH LIKE CALDWELL (SHE RECRUITED PARKER). WARLICK CAN COACH BASKETBALL (SHE LEARNED FROM THE BEST) BUT I DO NOT THINK SHE IS HEAD COACHING MATERIAL. I HOPE SHE PROVES ME WRONG. THIS IS JUST MY OPINION.

Theo writes:

in response to ModelMaker:

I AGREE. THE FIRST THING YOU HAVE TO HAVE BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE IS A DOMINATE PERSONALITY TO BE A HEAD COACH. WARLICK HAS A PASSIVE PERSONALITY. BESIDES THAT I WAS NOT IMPRESSED WITH THE WAY SHE HANDLED THE PLAYERS LAST YEAR. I THINK HART SHOULD HAVE GONE WITH A BIG NAME COACH LIKE CALDWELL (SHE RECRUITED PARKER). WARLICK CAN COACH BASKETBALL (SHE LEARNED FROM THE BEST) BUT I DO NOT THINK SHE IS HEAD COACHING MATERIAL. I HOPE SHE PROVES ME WRONG. THIS IS JUST MY OPINION.

Glad you are expressing your opinion it is great to hear what others are thinking. Please don't use all caps as that denotes yelling. Wierd as it is when I read your post I heard someone yelling it at me.
My opinion is that Coach Warlick deserved this opportunity and if there is anyone who has absorbed more from PHS I don't know who it would be. I also don't think last year was a fair test of how she will do. I honestly can't imagine the pressure she was under to show respect to Pat with Pat having good days and bad, to get a deserving senior class to the final four and handle really both the head coach and associate head coach duties. I really don't think we know yet what sort of head coach Holly will be (passive vs fiery etc). Time will tell Go Lady Vols.

ModelMaker writes:

in response to Theo:

Glad you are expressing your opinion it is great to hear what others are thinking. Please don't use all caps as that denotes yelling. Wierd as it is when I read your post I heard someone yelling it at me.
My opinion is that Coach Warlick deserved this opportunity and if there is anyone who has absorbed more from PHS I don't know who it would be. I also don't think last year was a fair test of how she will do. I honestly can't imagine the pressure she was under to show respect to Pat with Pat having good days and bad, to get a deserving senior class to the final four and handle really both the head coach and associate head coach duties. I really don't think we know yet what sort of head coach Holly will be (passive vs fiery etc). Time will tell Go Lady Vols.

Sorry about the caps. I have this small phone and it was a lot easier for me to type with all caps. Have a great day

Theo writes:

in response to ModelMaker:

Sorry about the caps. I have this small phone and it was a lot easier for me to type with all caps. Have a great day

I applaud your manual dexterity in typing posts on a phone! You have a good day as well.

r2d2 writes:

in response to RLL59:

Hiring Holly was inevitable once it was determined that Coach Summitt would stay on in some capacity. No coach with the seniority and qualifications to take over a top level program like TN would have accepted the job with Coach Summitt lurking in the background. If Holly, as head coach, wants to and does implement new strategies, such as establishing player roles, screening for the scorers, settling on a consistent lineup, and, most importantly, finding a way to reduce the pressure on each player to play flawless basketball or be yanked off the court, she may succeed, If not, the downward trend will continue and within a few years, with Coach Summitt leaving the program voluntarily, a new coach, with full authority, will be hired.

You are so right on, RLL59!

transplantiam writes:

Ya'll keep expressing you doubts in Warlick as HC on this board is only hurting the recruiting. It's been proven recruits do read these msg boards and some of this doubt will cause a recruit to have similar thoughts. The football team lost a recruit that was totally sold to the Vols, and was turned by msg board people and their distrust and doubt in Coach Dooley, and even told us that was the reason. It was pointed out by opposing coaches and it worked completely on one recruit. don't you people ever learn. Holly is the coach until she proves she can't do the job, and with you people with your constant rants against her could cost that one recruit that would put us back to winning and also pulling other good recruits. Get behind our coach if you truly love the Lady Vols and support her. If she can't do the job, that will show soon enough without ya'll helping her to fail.

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