In a move that surprised many observers of Maryland women's basketball, star point Guard Lexie Brown has requested her release from Maryland and will transfer for the 2015-16 season, as first reported by our friends at Swish Appeal. Brown, who gave her verbal commitment to Maryland as a high school freshman, has been instrumental in helping guide the Terps to consecutive Final Four appearances for the first time in program history.
Brown was considered the jewel of a recruiting class that included rising juniors Brionna Jones and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough. All three were recently invited to trials to play for Team USA in the Pan-American and World University Games. Jones and Walker-Kimbrough made the squad while Brown did not.
As a freshman, Brown played in 34 of 35 games starting 30 times. In her sophomore season, she started all 36 games in the Terrapins second consecutive run to the Final Four. In 2015, Maryland ran through their initial Big Ten season with a perfect 18-0 record and swept through three games to capture the B1G Tournament title as well. Those 21 wins were part of a program record 28 game winning streak.
Brown, from North Gwinnett High School, just outside Atlanta, GA, committed to Maryland when she entered the ninth grade. She averaged 10.1 points and 4.3 assists as a freshman and improved those totals to 13.1 points and 4.5 assists in her sophomore campaign. She never shied away from the spotlight and was often referred to as "Big Shot" Brown by coach Brenda Frese.
Brown's departure opens up a vacancy at the point guard position that will likely be filled by seniors Brene Moseley and Chloe Pavlech with rising sophomore Kristen Confroy possibly seeing some spot duty. Moseley, a top recruit from Paint Branch HighSchool in Montgomery County has seen her playing time limited first by injury and subsequently by Brown's arrival. She has been one of the team's vocal leaders and now must be poised to assume an on court leadership role, as well.
Pavlech filled in admirably and gamely in her freshman season when Moseley was felled by an ACL tear starting 31 games when the Terps' roster dwindled to as few as seven players. She has seen her playing time gradually diminish over her sophomore and junior campaigns but may again be called upon to assume a much more prominent role in the Terps' back court rotation.
As for where Brown might land, I'd suggest watching the news for Kayla Davis who has, reportedly asked for her release from Georgia Tech. Davis, a 6'2" wing hails from Suwanee, GA, the same home town as Brown. Though they played for rival high schools, the two are reportedly close friends. Dave was a first team All-ACC performer in 2015 and it will be quite a recruiting coup should the two reunite on the same college team.