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Lucy Olsen, Hailey Van Lith among most impactful women’s basketball transfers

NS_headshot_clearbackgroundby:Nick Schultz05/02/24


Lucy Olsen, Hailey Van Lith Listed Among Most Impactful Women’s Basketball Transfers | 05.02.24

Since the transfer portal opened after Selection Sunday, plenty of big names will play the 2024-25 season in new places. But there are some that stand out above the rest.

On3’s Talia Goodman broke down some of the more notable transfers from this cycle, headlined by Lucy Olsen and Hailey Van Lith. Olsen spent this past season at Villanova, where she averaged 23.3 points per game to rank third in the nation, while Van Lith joined a star-studded LSU team. However, she found herself playing out of position and opted for a change of scenery when she committed to TCU.

On3 2023-2024 Women’s Basketball Transfer Portal Tracker

Olsen might be going to the more intriguing situation, though. She faces the tall task of helping replace the production of Caitlin Clark, the No. 1 overall pick in last month’s WNBA Draft who became the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer last year. While Goodman said she likely won’t completely replace Clark – who can? – she’s the perfect addition to at least give it a go.

“I think Lucy Olsen is definitely a big one,” Goodman told Andy Staples on Andy Staples On3. “She was third in scoring in the country on a good Villanova team, who’s historically really great. And coming to Iowa – and I know, you can’t fill the Caitlin Clark shoes. You can’t do it. But if you wanted someone to try, it would be her. It would definitely be her.”

As for Van Lith, she took on a position change at LSU and had an up-and-down season under Kim Mulkey’s watch. She averaged 11.6 points, which was her lowest production since her freshman season at Louisville, but added a career-high 3.6 assists as she took on the point guard role. It also followed an impressive 2022-23 season in which Van Lith scored 19.7 points when she played the 2-guard spot.

With one more year of eligibility left, Van Lith decided it was time to go back to her original position. TCU gave her that opportunity, and Goodman said it could work out well for both sides.

“And I think Haley Van Lith is another really interesting one,” Goodman said. “TCU is kind of loading up over there. She was great at Louisville, went to LSU and struggled a little bit, playing out of position. She wants to get back in position. So I think TCU will be a good spot for her and could really elevate TCU into a top-25 team, in my opinion, where they were not that without her.”

The women’s basketball transfer portal window closed Tuesday night, although names can keep coming in until Thursday. While athletes had until Tuesday to decide their plans, compliance offices have 48 hours to put names into the portal.