It never hurts to get a head start in the basketball recruiting race, and that’s what the Baylor Lady Bears appear to have done with their latest commitment.
Baylor has landed a pledge from Alexandria Gulley, a 5-8 point guard who will start her freshman year of high school in the fall at the Triple A Academy in Dallas.
Gulley, who will graduate high school in 2015, would be eligible to sign in November 2014.
“I’ve been going to Baylor’s camps since I was 7 or 8, and I’ve been watching them play as long as I can remember,” Gulley said. “So to be able to go there to play was kind of a no-brainer.”
“It’s definitely a relief for me,” said Alexandria’s father Fred Gulley, who played college football at Arkansas-Pine Bluff. “You always want your child to have a better educational opportunity than yourself. I was never recruited by any major programs, and really wasn’t recruited by anyone until my senior year. I certainly didn’t have them knocking on my door in the eighth grade like she does.”
Alexandria Gulley has attended Baylor coach Kim Mulkey’s summer camps for the last seven summers, and distinguished herself as a top prospect playing Biddy Basketball and AAU ball.
Fred Gulley said it wasn’t long after Alexandria first started playing that he knew she had a special knack for the game.
“She played with the boys in Biddy Basketball,” Fred said. “She was always wheeling and dealing and wowing everyone, and we knew she was special. We’d pull in the driveway at the house and she’d hop out the car and shoot 10 jump shots before we got out.”
Alexandria won a national championship in Biddy Basketball at age 8, achieving All-America recognition in the process. She believes her ballhandling and passing skills are her strength as a player, but hopes to to hone her shooting during her high school years.
“My jump shooting and long-range shooting, that’s what I really need to develop the most,” she said. “I know I’m going to have to get better if I want to be the best I can be.”
Gulley’s commitment is Baylor’s first for the class of 2015. The Lady Bears have a 2014 commitment from McKenzie Calvert, a 5-9 guard who just completed her freshman year at Cibolo Steele this year.
Verbal commitments are nonbinding. Players aren’t eligible to sign a national letter of intent until their senior year of high school.