Mercedes Russell isn't close to making choice

Despite a flurry of recruiting activity over the weekend and a commitment by her close friend, top women's basketball prospect Mercedes Russell isn't close to making her choice.

Bill Wagner, Russell's coach at Springfield (Ore.) High, met with the 6-foot-5 junior for more than a hour on Monday and said, "there's nothing imminent."

"Right now, it's awfully early,'' Wagner said. "She's still open."

Four players committed to North Carolina on Saturday. One of them was Stephanie Mavunga. Since the 6-3 forward is a close friend of Russell's, speculation ensued as to whether Russell might join the group.

Russell will spend time next month staying with Mavunga at her home in Indianapolis.

Still, Wagner said that Louisville and Tennessee remain serious considerations for Russell, who averaged 26 points, 15 rebounds, six blocks and five assists per game this season in leading Springfield to a second consecutive state championship and earning Class 5A player of the year honors.

"I think we'll see her go through the (recruiting) process,'' Wagner said.

He also thinks Russell's choice will be solely her call.

"The decision has to be hers,'' Wagner said. "It can't be made for her by others."

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Comments » 21

richvol writes:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

SummittsCourt writes:

She could be a program changer in the likes of Chamique, Tamika or Candace.

Theo writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

How silly you are. Holly hasn't even been up to bat using your analogy. Until 30 days ago we couldn't even tell recruits who the head coach was going to be. Until 10 days ago our recruiting staff wasn't even complete. Keep your strikes to yourself.
Go Lady Vols and Go Coach Warlick and staff.

Pullingguard writes:

Would be nice if she selected Lady Vols, however; it seems the dice are stacked against them, for staying with your best friend who selected North Carolina is not a good omen. Also, seems NC is getting a good class of highly rated support people for another selling point. Just hope she goes to LV..

AllforTenn writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

Really? How mundane you are.

Bubba_Knows writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

I thought Goober died the other day and then you write this nonsense.

proudveteran writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

If this "jerk" is a Lady Vols and team supporter,we sure do not need any competitor enemies. These so called Lady Vol fans and supporters need to take their "phooey" to the nearest barnyard and jump right in with the rest of the "cow piles"...he would fit right in and not be determined either!!!

tennrich1 writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

Silly, silly boy....be just a little creative....just a little...

FearlessFreep writes:

Holly's two hires are outstanding recruiters. I seriously doubt talent will be an issue at UT.

huntined#565710 writes:

Russell would sure be in the BIG SPOTLIGHT at TENN. She would be another great name to go down in TENN history!! She also has to know that no school loves their team like LADY VOL FANS DO..

voloffaith writes:

Do we want a Mercedes or a Tucker? Trivia question....if you are an automobile history buff you will get this....The correct answer is both....

JimmyJoe writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

Come on man. Keep you opinions to yourself! This is not the forum to say what you think or feel. Only the facts here man. Hang in there RV.

volsgirl writes:

in response to richvol:

If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three.

Realy!!!!!!what baseball game you see at?
Coach Holly better than you think . Come on now

JimmyJoe writes:

But remember at Tennessee you get four strikes.

Razor784 writes:

What's up with the women's program at North Carolina anyways, they didn't even make the tournament last year and then the have one of the biggest single recruiting days that i've ever heard of, 4 top players in 1 day is just crazy, I just don't see how they did it

ps11824 writes:

richvol writes:
If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three. ]]

Well, rich, if you swing at the first pitch and miss, you better expect to be a big old vulnerable target at bat. You really set yourself up for that barrage of comments.

I think we are way too critical of Holly and it really isn't fair. She's doing a fine job thus far.

It is a possibility that we (gvx posters) are a part of the reasons recruits stay away from the program. Yes, they read this stuff. We are unfairly critical of everything shy of perfection. What's gotten into us?

If I were a recruit and logged on to read the mean shots posters are firing at Holly and every move she makes from the bus she rides in to the administrative assistants she chooses, I would run away as fast as I could go. Who wants to jump into a snake pit?

"Those Lady Vol fans will slander me AND my mother if I don't make every shot and win every game including an NC for 4 years. I'm choosing a school where fans appreciate and support me and my coaching staff during the good times and the down times when we I need it most."

True fans should be like best friends. Laugh with me, cry with me, but don't badmouth me to the nation. I may break into song: What A Wonderful World That Would Be...

ladyvolcp3 writes:

holly is a great coach she learned from the best. and with pat summit still being their what other school could you find that at nowhere.

ps11824 writes:

If an athlete doesn't want to be a TN Lady Vol, that's her choice; that's her loss. More power to her.

There have been many top-10 recruits at TN in the past who simply did not fit. That's the nature of the beast. There will be top-notch basketball players coming to TN who will develop into top-ranked athletes, IMHO.

If I remember correctly Kyra Elzy was not in the top tier. She was key in her freshman year helping us win it all.

martic#220796 writes:

in response to ps11824:

richvol writes:
If Holly doesn't get a committment from this girl it's strike three. ]]

Well, rich, if you swing at the first pitch and miss, you better expect to be a big old vulnerable target at bat. You really set yourself up for that barrage of comments.

I think we are way too critical of Holly and it really isn't fair. She's doing a fine job thus far.

It is a possibility that we (gvx posters) are a part of the reasons recruits stay away from the program. Yes, they read this stuff. We are unfairly critical of everything shy of perfection. What's gotten into us?

If I were a recruit and logged on to read the mean shots posters are firing at Holly and every move she makes from the bus she rides in to the administrative assistants she chooses, I would run away as fast as I could go. Who wants to jump into a snake pit?

"Those Lady Vol fans will slander me AND my mother if I don't make every shot and win every game including an NC for 4 years. I'm choosing a school where fans appreciate and support me and my coaching staff during the good times and the down times when we I need it most."

True fans should be like best friends. Laugh with me, cry with me, but don't badmouth me to the nation. I may break into song: What A Wonderful World That Would Be...

I agree about Holly, last year she was coaching under difficult circumstances. (There were times I thought she shouldn't be the coach) Next year won't be easy because she has been handed the reins of a team in disarray, 9 players, 2 especially injury prone. The bulk of the recruiting done under Pat's watch. So we LV fans need to be more patient. I posted when the Carter girl reopened her recruitment, if I was her I wouldn't come here with all the venomous comments that were made. By the way are we still in the running for Carter? I hear she's a game changer too. What we as LV fans need to do if find a way to encourage these ladies to play for us. I read once that UCONN fans would go to these recruits games and hold up signs and cheer for these girls. Misses Russell and Carter, if you are reading these post please ignore the ignorant and nay sayers and come to play for the Lady Vols!!!!!

martic#220796 writes:

in response to martic#220796:

I agree about Holly, last year she was coaching under difficult circumstances. (There were times I thought she shouldn't be the coach) Next year won't be easy because she has been handed the reins of a team in disarray, 9 players, 2 especially injury prone. The bulk of the recruiting done under Pat's watch. So we LV fans need to be more patient. I posted when the Carter girl reopened her recruitment, if I was her I wouldn't come here with all the venomous comments that were made. By the way are we still in the running for Carter? I hear she's a game changer too. What we as LV fans need to do if find a way to encourage these ladies to play for us. I read once that UCONN fans would go to these recruits games and hold up signs and cheer for these girls. Misses Russell and Carter, if you are reading these post please ignore the ignorant and nay sayers and come to play for the Lady Vols!!!!!

Sorry folks that should be Kaela Davis not Carter. Is it possible she would reconsider?

tamoore#1409187 writes:

I'll bet that her final choice will get down to the following three schools: Tennessee, Louisville, North Carolina. I think that she would be shrewd to choose either Tennessee or Louisville. Am not convinced that jumping into the Carolina frying pan would be wise.

I doubt she'll go the Baylor route because who wants to follow in Griner's footsteps? Plus, will Kim hang around after her daughter, a reserve on the team, graduates in 2014? About Notre Dame, don't think she'll go that way. Why? McGraw has been the HC for nearly 3 decades, so the question begs: how much longer will she choose to coach? Waltz and Warlick I suspect will remain where they are for at least 5 years and at North Carolina, we all know that story.

This girl couldn't go wrong choosing Tennessee. Stupendous program, fan support, and tradition.

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