Tiarra Brown didn’t get much out of her winter basketball recruiting at Bethel High School. so she delayed the restart of it this spring.
She had scholarship offers coming in. And she had official visits set up.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak wrecked all of those plans.
So, she re-routed her direction in the past week – to virtual recruiting. And when it was over, she gave Grand Canyon University a verbal pledge over Washington and Eastern Washington.
Brown, the Braves’ 5-foot-10 all-state guard, will sign her letter of intent Wednesday to not only join the Lopes’ NCAA Division I program, but rejoin her sister, Tianna.
“That means a lot,” Tiarra Brown said. “I know the type of chemistry we have, and how we play together.”
One major development spearheaded Brown’s decision.
Former GCU women’s coach Nicole Powell left in late March to take a job at UC Riverside, leaving the future of a few of the players, including Tianna, in limbo.
Last week, the university announced Molly Miller, a two-time NCAA Division II national coach of the year at Drury, as its new leader.
Miller immediately reached out to all of the GCU returners, including Tianna, to introduce herself – and hopefully retain their services for the upcoming 2020-21 season.
Then, Miller asked about Tiarra’s status. After spending Saturday reviewing the Bethel senior’s, she called back Sunday and made a convincing pitch to include her as part of this recruiting class.
Tiarra Brown, who was one of Scorebook Live’s 50 most impactful players after the 2019-20 season, accepted the offer right on the spot.
“(Miller) sounds excited about what to do with the the program defensively, and how intense she is about defense,” Brown said.
It fits Brown’s play-fast style: She averaged 18.0 points, 10.0 rebounds and 4.6 steals, and was named the 3A PCL player of the year (and defensive player of the year, too).
Brown has never seen the campus – except for when connecting with her sister.
“When (Tianna) was there, we’d be on FaceTime, and I had an idea of the layout,” Brown said.