Early Monday evening, the Washington Women’s Basketball program announced the signing of Baylor guard Trinity Oliver as a transfer to the University of Washington.
Last season, as a redshirt junior, Trinity Oliver started 28 of 31 games for the Lady Bears, scoring 4.4 points per game.
More accurately, based on playing time, Oliver (499 minutes played/16.1 mins per game) was the fourth guard in Baylor’s backcourt rotation last season — behind guards Moon Ursin (983 minutes); Didi Richards (894); and DiJonai Carrington (652).
However, considering Baylor had arguably the most talented backcourt in women’s basketball last year, this is not damning Oliver with faint praise.
In the 2020-2021 season, Oliver also added 3.1 rebounds per game, while shooting 45.1% overall from the field.
Oliver also posted 1.2 assists versus one turnover per game; her assist-to-turnover ratio (1.23) ranked in the top 1/3 of all Division One players.
As a high school senior, Oliver was considered a 3-star recruit and ranked 30th best guard by ESPN’s HoopGurlz rankings.
Most importantly, Oliver adds experience and toughness to a young Huskies roster.
Trinity Oliver has competed at the highest levels of college women’s basketball, including winning a national championship at Baylor in 2019.
However, without her uber-talented Baylor teammates Oliver will need to improve in certain areas to maximize her success as a PAC-12 player.
Game film shows that Oliver is (mostly) a solid defender, despite a tendency to go under ball-screens at times — a bad habit that will be repeatedly exploited by PAC-12 guards who eagerly shoot unguarded three-pointers.
(Hopefully, this is not a result of Oliver losing lateral speed due to an ACL injury, she suffered as a Baylor freshman.)
Offensively, Oliver will need to work on using her imposing size (5’9″ with a sturdy build) to her advantage, when coming off ball screens to get dribble-penetration and then facilitate for her teammates.
If Oliver can master the side pick-and-roll that was prevalent in Coach Langley’s Rice’s offense, it should be a significant boost to the Huskies offense.
Trinity Oliver should be a perfect fit in what is expected to be a measured style of play by the Huskies this season, emphasizing half-court execution and opportunistic fast breaks.
Do not expect Oliver to have her greatest impact for UW scoring-wise, rather Oliver’s greatest contribution will be in her versatile and physical style of play at guard, along with heady leadership ability.
Oliver should blend well with the fifth-year leadership of grad transfer center Nancy Mulkey; as well as, guards Missy Peterson and Alexis Griggsby.
The addition of Trinity Oliver is a welcome one for Huskies fans.