Women's Basketball Journal Ranks Top 10 Recruiting Classes

Aug. 30, 2001

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - As Rachel Woodward (Murrieta Valley, Calif.) and Kimberly Gipson (Westchester, Calif.) begin their first season with the USC women's basketball team, many are looking to the duo to make an immediate impact on this year's squad.

This 2001-02 freshman class was recently ranked No. 6 among the nation's Top 10 recruiting classes according to the Women's Basketball Journal. The rank is due in large part to the expectations many have of Gipson, a 6-5 center who was ranked as high as 39th by the All-Star Girl's Report as a high school senior. The Top 10 is as follows: 1. Tennessee, 2. Rutgers, 3. Duke, 4. Stanford, 5. North Carolina, 6. USC, 7. Georgia, 8. LSU, 9. Arizona, 10. Florida.

Gipson was also rated one of the nation's Top 21 players of impact for the upcoming season according to WOMENSCOLLEGEHOOPS.com. '...Gipson could have a major impact as she can take pressure off sophomore Ebony Hoffman and make USC nearly unstoppable down low,' states the publication.

Woodward, a 6-foot-1 forward, is considered to be among the nation's top 50 prep players by various recruiting publications. She averaged 22.3 points and 14 rebounds a game as a junior and was honored as a Nike All-America, All-CIF first team selection and all-area pick.

The Women of Troy begin official practices for the upcoming season on Oct. 13.

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