With recent transfers Talia von Oelhoffen and Kiki Iriafen joining first-team All-American JuJu Watkins and the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class at USC next season, the Trojans look to transition from an up-and-coming squad to a legitimate title contender. 

Former Oregon State graduate student von Oelhoffen is the latest collegiate talent to commit to the program, announcing her transfer Monday via ESPN. She follows ex-Stanford leading-scorer Iriafen in the jump to the pair’s one-time Pac-12 rival.

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The 5-foot-11 Washington native was a two-time All-Pac-12 guard during her time at Oregon State. But after the recent dissolution of the Pac-12, the Corvallis side found themselves without a permanent home conference going forward. Many big name players opted to take their skill elsewhere as a result, with von Oelhoffen’s fellow ex-Beaver Raegan Beers announcing her own departure to Oklahoma on Monday.

According to DraftKings, USC is now tied with UConn for the second-best betting odds to win the 2025 NCAA women’s tournament. Dawn Staley’s tested South Carolina side, poised for a repeat performance, holds down the number one spot.

Last year, LSU loaded up in the transfer portal after beating Iowa to win the 2023 national championship. The Tigers were clear favorites coming into the 2023-24 season, but were bounced in the Elite Eight by Caitlin Clark’s Hawkeyes. Shortly thereafter, star transfer Hailey Van Lith opted to transfer a second time, this time signing with TCU. 

Yet while history proves that an excess of star power doesn’t always translate to on-court chemistry, on paper, USC sure looks ready to hold their own — in 2025 and beyond.

Former Stanford leading-scorer Kiki Iriafen is set to join star rising sophomore JuJu Watkins at USC next year, reported ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Saturday. 

The 6-foot-3 forward is coming off a breakout season with the Cardinal, where the then-junior led Stanford to the Sweet 16 with an average of 19.4 points, 11 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game. Walking away with the Pac-12’s Most Improved Player award and a spot on the All-Pac-12 team, Iriafen entered the portal at the close of last season and was subsequently ranked second on ESPN’s 2024-2025 transfer ranking list.

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At USC, Iriafen will play out her senior year alongside the Women's Basketball Coaches Association’s 2024 National Freshman of the Year JuJu Watkins, forming what could be an explosive partnership for the Trojans as they look to build momentum going into next season. The Southern California side advanced to the Elite Eight for the first time since 1994 this year, ultimately falling to UConn in a heated 80-73 battle.

Iriafen wasn’t the only one making choices this past week. LSU guard Hailey Van Lith officially announced her own transfer to TCU on Friday, while Princeton standout Kaitlyn Chen committed to UConn for her final year of college eligibility. Other big names still weighing their options are Oregon State's Talia Von Oelhoffen and Raegan Beers, as well as UNC's Deja Kelly.

With conference realignment on the horizon and team fit a contending factor, the NCAA women's basketball transfer portal has been busier than ever. And while transfers can bolster many types of college programs, this particular offseason has seen talent-rich programs growing even richer.

Hailey Van Lith is reportedly on her way to TCU, says Talia Goodman of The Next Hoops.

The former Louisville star joined LSU for the 2023-24 season, but a disappointing run in Baton Rouge saw her enter the transfer portal once again at the season’s end. Van Lith opted to use her fifth year of eligibility versus declaring for the WNBA draft.

Van Lith was admittedly less effective as a Tiger. Her field goal percentage decreased from .411 in 2022-23 with Louisville to .388 at LSU. She also went from averaging 19.7 points per game to just 11.6, due in part to a change of position from shooting guard to more of a point guard role.

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At an end-of-season banquet last week, LSU coach Kim Mulkey used her speech to wish Van Lith well, calling her "one of the hardest working players that I’ve ever coached."

"Her aspirations were to get drafted this year," Mulkey said, according to NOLA.com. "And she realized, 'I need another year, and I need to go back to a place where I can relax and get back to my normal position.'

"And what do you do? You hug her, and you wish her well."

The decision to commit to TCU may come as a surprise after Van Lith paid a visit to Mississippi State last weekend. The Horned Frogs finished out the 2023-24 season 21-12 overall, coming in 9th in the Big 12 and scoring an average of 69.5 points per game. The program also made headlines in January when they held mid-season open tryouts in response to an onslaught of sidelining injuries.

When Angel Reese decided to transfer from Maryland to LSU before last season, she changed the trajectory of LSU women’s basketball. After leading the Tigers to their first NCAA Championship last month, Reese has helped put LSU on the map as the premier destination for transfers.

Coming off the 2023 NCAA title, LSU is the favorite to repeat next year thanks to the additions of top transfers Aneesah Morrow from DePaul and Hailey Van Lith from Louisville.

“It’s lit,” Reese told Just Women’s Sports from Overtime’s Takeover event on Saturday, the day after Morrow revealed her decision. “They say we are building a superteam, so I’m excited.”

A year ago, when Reese was looking for her new home, she visited LSU and promptly canceled planned trips to Tennessee and South Carolina after finding the perfect fit with head coach Kim Mulkey and the school.

This offseason, when Van Lith entered the transfer portal, no other school even emerged as a candidate for the graduate student before she became a Tiger. Morrow’s transfer process was full of fanfare as she posted updates on social media and announced her decision in an NIL-sponsored video. Morrow, the fourth-leading scorer in the nation last season, selected LSU over South Carolina and USC.

There’s something about LSU — or a collection of somethings, according to Reese — that instantly wins over prospective transfers.

One of those things is Mulkey, with whom Reese quickly developed a close relationship. The Final Four MVP sings her coach’s praises at every opportunity. Van Lith shares a similar bond with Mulkey, having nearly committed to play for her at Baylor a few years ago. Even though she chose Louisville out of high school, she maintained a relationship with Mulkey.

“Coach Mulkey and I have had a great relationship since I was in high school,” Van Lith said when she signed with the Tigers. “I am extremely excited and honored to have an opportunity to play for her. She will help elevate my game and push me to be successful at the next level.”

Van Lith fills a key role on LSU’s roster after Alexis Morris graduated and moved on to the WNBA. LSU needs a point guard who can provide another scoring threat alongside the team’s potent post duo of Reese and Morrow. Van Lith is a skilled attacker who dominates the midrange, which should help LSU open up space in the paint. That’s also how Morris did a lot of her damage for the Tigers last season, and especially during the NCAA Tournament.

Van Lith’s competitive spirit is well-known. After three seasons with Louisville, one of which resulted in a Final Four, the guard has yet to win a title. LSU gives her the opportunity to do so.

That was a key piece in Morrow’s decision as well. The former DePaul star averaged 25.7 points and 12.2 rebounds last season, but told ESPN last week that she felt she had “nothing to show for it” because the Blue Demons weren’t able to secure conference titles and appeared in only one NCAA Tournament during her tenure.

Now, Morrow will play alongside other established stars and be a part of what should be the most dominant frontcourt duo in the country with Reese.

Morrow also wanted a school that would help her become a more well-rounded player and person off the court. She’s particularly interested in growing as a businesswoman and entrepreneur. Once again, in the NIL landscape, LSU is at the forefront.

Reese is the perfect example. She expressed interest in modeling, and on Monday was featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition, just one of many off-court deals and accomplishments she’s seen come to fruition at LSU.

Reese and LSU teammate Flau’jae Johnson, who both helped mentor some of the top girls’ high school players in the country at the Overtime Takeover event this past weekend, led the men’s and women’s Final Four field in social media following. Reese, 21, also led all March Madness athletes in NIL merchandise sales.

“When I came to LSU, I had 70k followers and now I have going on 2 (million),” Reese said of her social media platforms. “(LSU) embraces it, and coach Mulkey lets you be who you are. On the court, she makes sure you come into practice and handle your business, but outside she doesn’t make you sit in a box and be one thing.”

Reese’s newest trophy-seeking teammates are ready for that, too.

“The chip is on our shoulder, for sure,” Reese said. “Everyone is going to be coming at us, just like last year, but that makes the game fun.”

Eden Laase is a Staff Writer at Just Women’s Sports. Follow her on Twitter @eden_laase.

Top NCAA basketball transfer Hailey Van Lith has announced her commitment to the defending national champion LSU Tigers.

More than a week after making an official visit to LSU’s campus, Van Lith announced her signing on Instagram with the caption “eleven,” a reference to her jersey number with the Tigers. LSU sophomore guard Flau’jae Johnson commented on the post, “Let’s go get another 1.”

One of the top players in the transfer portal, Van Lith averaged 19.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.2 assists with Louisville last season.

Van Lith’s decision doesn’t come as a surprise. The guard has a connection to LSU coach Kim Mulkey, who recruited her out of high school when she was the coach at Baylor. The point guard’s final two choices at the time came down to Baylor and Louisville. Now, she’ll finally link up with Mulkey in Baton Rouge.

With Alexis Morris’ departure to the WNBA, the Tigers had an opening at point guard that Van Lith will fill in 2023-24.

The commitment could throw a wrench into the plans of DePaul transfer Aneesah Morrow, who is set to visit LSU over the weekend. The Tigers are among her final three choices for her next destination, the All-American announced last week.

After narrowing her list down to three schools, Aneesah Morrow is set to visit both LSU and South Carolina’s campuses as she continues to mull her transfer decision.

Morrow, the NCAA’s fourth-leading scorer with DePaul in 2022-23, has already visited USC, according to ESPN’s Alexa Philippou. She’ll meet with the reigning NCAA champion Tigers this weekend before going to South Carolina next weekend. On Thursday, former star Louisville guard Hailey Van Lith announced her commitment to LSU.

“I kind of feel like I was a butterfly in a cocoon, and now it’s time for me to go and spread my wings,” Morrow told ESPN about her decision to transfer after two seasons at DePaul in her hometown of Chicago.

Morrow averaged 25.7 points and 12.2 rebounds per game for the Blue Demons while dealing with knee injuries last season. After DePaul went 16-17 in 2022-23, the All-American forward said she wants to win games while also improving her skills, including ball-handling, 3-point shooting and defense.

But Morrow is focused on more than basketball when it comes to her next destination. With passions in business, entrepreneurship, style and fashion, the 20-year-old told ESPN she wants her new program to help her further her education and purse her interests on and off the court.

The 2022 NWSL summer trade window closed on Wednesday, ushering in a roster freeze for the rest of the season and the start of the NWSL’s first free agency period.

As the league and NWSL Players Association clash over the full list of eligible free agents, Just Women’s Sports breaks down each team’s trades, waives and signings from the summer transfer window, dividing them into winning and losing categories in no particular order.


Houston Dash

The Dash easily top this list. In the last week, they strengthened their backline with the addition of 2021 Defender of the Year Caprice Dydasco, signed Jamaican national team forward Tiernny Wiltshire and acquired Valérie Gauvin from the North Carolina Courage. The forward has scored 17 goals in 37 appearances for the French national team and should help boost a Houston attack that Ebony Salmon has been lighting up since she joined the team via a trade on July 1. After playing sparingly for Racing Louisville this season, Salmon has scored eight goals in eight games with Houston. Despite star forward Rachel Daly leaving for Aston Villa in August, with so many new stars, it’s safe to say the Dash will be fine without her.

Kansas City Current

Cece Kizer has been a game-changer for the Current during their 11-game unbeaten streak. Since joining Kansas City at the end of May, Kizer has scored five goals, making up almost a quarter of the Current’s season total. French national team player and former Lyon midfielder Claire Lavogez has also provided a boost, scoring one goal in the three games she’s played since signing with the team on July 20. Kansas City will have to adjust to life without midfielder Victoria Pickett after trading her to Gotham FC this week, but they have a whopping $200,000 in allocation money and Gotham’s second-highest first-round 2023 draft pick or natural first-round pick to use to their advantage.

Angel City FC

Two words: Sydney Leroux. Acquiring the former U.S. women’s national team forward for a first-round 2024 draft pick and $75,000 allocation money was a big save for Angel City after losing Christen Press to a season-ending injury in June. They also just signed 2022 draft pick Claire Emslie and gained an international spot from OL Reign in exchange for $40,000 in allocation money. Goalkeeper Maia Pérez went on loan to Grand Paris Seine Ouest 92 Issy in France, where she’ll gain valuable experience as a starter while Angel City continues to play current starting keeper DiDi Haračić. Wins all around.

Portland Thorns FC

The first-place Portland Thorns have found their rhythm with the players they have, so there was no need for any major roster shake-ups. They did acquire defender Tegan McGrady from San Diego in exchange for Madison Pogarch in late July. McGrady brings experience after winning the NWSL championship with the Washington Spirit last season.

San Diego Wave FC

After picking up Pogarch from Portland, the Wave signed U.S. youth national team star Jaedyn Shaw, who had previously trained with the Spirit. The 17-year-old wasted no time showcasing her talent, scoring the game-winning goal in her NWSL debut, the only game she’s played with the Wave so far this season.

OL Reign

Like the Dash, the Reign have gone all-in on blockbuster signings this season, acquiring former NWSL MVP Kim Little, Olympic gold medalist Jordyn Huitema and star forward Tobin Heath. The team has yet to turn the additions into results as well as Houston has, but Heath’s impact should increase as she gets more minutes. Huitema has been finding her rhythm, scoring the game-winner in the Reign’s 2-1 Women’s Cup championship victory. On the downside, Little’s contract was only for the summer and the Reign traded Ally Watt, an important player off the bench, to Orlando. But OL Reign’s overall depth should keep them in contention as the playoffs approach.


NJ/NY Gotham FC

Gotham would have been a winner on this list after acquiring Taylor Smith and Victoria Pickett, especially given how dominant Smith has been with her two goals and one assist this season, but Caprice Dydasco is a big loss. The team has conceded a league-worst 32 goals this season, and without one of their most consistent players on the backline, they’ll continue to have their work cut out for them.

Orlando Pride

The Pride had a rollercoaster of a summer. While Sydney Leroux, Amy Turner and Angharad James were big, unexpected losses, Orlando also acquired some serious talent. Ally Watt from OL Reign and Haley Hanson from the Dash bring leadership and winning experience that will be important for the young squad. The Pride will hardly miss the second-round pick in the 2023 NWSL Draft and $75,000 in allocation money they gave the Dash in exchange for Hanson because they already have a wealth of draft picks. Thais Reiss and Haley Bugeja are two other young additions with loads of talent.


Chicago Red Stars

The Red Stars are getting left behind. They dominated the first half of the year to stay near the top of the standings, but as other teams started making moves to boost their rosters, Chicago remained stagnant. Sarah Luebbert returning to the Red Stars from a one-year loan with Club América in Liga MX Femenil has been the biggest change.

North Carolina Courage

From an outside perspective, it appears that head coach Sean Nahas didn’t realize the amount of talent his team had coming into the season. Taylor Smith and Jorian Baucom were waived after hardly getting any playing time with the Courage, but since leaving North Carolina, Smith has scored two goals for Gotham. The Courage also traded Valérie Gauvin, one of the top players in France, to Houston before she got a minute of playing time.

Racing Louisville FC

Louisville lost a big talent when they traded Ebony Salmon to Houston in exchange for $150,000 in allocation money in 2022, with an additional $25,000 in 2023. While head coach Kim Björkegren kept Salmon on the bench, she’s scored eight goals and moved into fourth on the list of scoring leaders since leaving Louisville. The team also traded star forward Cece Kizer and defender Addisyn Merrick to Kansas City and sent Tobin Heath’s rights to OL Reign. On the bright side for Louisville, defender Satara Murray has been a consistent starter after they signed her to a two-year deal.

Washington Spirit

The defending NWSL champions are near the bottom of the league standings and dealing with internal turmoil after head coach Kris Ward was fired following an incident at practice. While they haven’t been far off from winning games since appearing in the Challenge Cup final in May, the Spirit clearly need a spark and they didn’t make any moves before the trade deadline.

Jessa Braun is a contributing writer at Just Women’s Sports covering the NWSL and USWNT. Follow her on Twitter @jessabraun.