The three players currently in the University of Connecticut's recruiting Class of 2016 have something in common. Molly Bent (10), Crystal Dangerfield (32), and Kyla Irwin (25) wear uniform numbers for their respective high schools that are displayed in the Huskies of Honor at Gampel Pavilion.
But 25 has been worn at UConn by Mel Thomas and Michala Johnson since Svetlana Abrosimova graduated in 2001 as a three-time All-American, and 32 has been worn by Kalana Greene and Heather Buck since Swin Cash graduated after her All-American senior campaign of 2002. But not one player has worn No. 10 since Sue Bird graduated in 2002 after being the national Player of the Year and leading the Huskies to a 39-0 national championship season.
Bent -- a 5-foot-9 senior point guard from Centerville, Massachusetts, and Tabor Academy -- thought the tough decisions were over when she made her oral commitment to attend UConn on June 4.
"I haven't really thought about it," Bent said. "But I know Sue was the last one to wear No. 10. And I love watching her play and I've done it since I was a little kid. At school we have this 'Sue Bird Drill' that we go up and down the court and then shoot a pull-up jumper.
"It would be an honor to wear it but I don't want anyone to think I'm doing it because I'm going to be the next Sue Bird. I mean, with her you're talking about one of the greatest players ever."
Being Molly Bent has been good enough to make her one of the top prep school players in New England and earn her a scholarship from the 10-time national champion Huskies.
She joined the varsity team at Barnstable High as an eighth grader and scored 1,000 in three years before transferring to Tabor Academy in Marion, Massachusetts. She repeated her sophomore year when she made the move to Tabor and has been a New England Prep School Class A all-star in both her seasons there.
A straight-A student, Bent had been looking at Ivy League schools Brown and Princeton as well as mid-majors Providence and Holy Cross while also receiving interest from higher-profile programs in the past year before accepting UConn coach Geno Auriemma's offer.
She played AAU ball with the Rhode Island Breakers.
"I'm one of the leaders and I needed to step up," Bent said. "One of the things that I've worked on with my coaches is making good decisions -- when to attack the basket, when to make the right pass, when to pull the ball out and run the offense. I think that I've improved with that."
But at a tournament in Pennsylvania in early July, she injured her left ankle and it cost her the rest of her AAU summer.
"It was like our fifth game in three days and I was trying to avoid a screen and just turned it," Bent said. "I was glad that I didn't do it jumping and then landing wrong or on someone's foot. It just turned over. I've sprained my ankle before but this is my first bad one.
"I've done a lot on the bike trying to stay in shape and I did shoot a lot of free throws. I'm just now getting back into things. I want to be sure that I'm back to 100 percent."
Bent is also a soccer standout at Tabor and said she'll be ready for the start of practice early next month. Her first game is scheduled for Sept. 22.
She said she considered not playing soccer this fall.
"I heard people telling me to save myself for basketball season," Bent said. "But I like playing and it's a good way to stay in shape. And I really enjoy the team aspect, being a part of the team and working together. It's fun.
"Even though I'm focused on soccer during the fall, I find time to get into the gym every day to work on things with my game."
One of the things she did while resting her ankle was watch future teammate Kia Nurse represent Canada at the Pan American Games. Nurse torched the United States team led by UConn senior All-Americans Moriah Jefferson and Breanna Stewart for 33 points in the final to give Canada its first gold medal in the event.
Earlier this month, Nurse was the MVP of the FIBA Americas Championship as Canada again won gold and clinched a berth in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
"One of the things that the UConn coaches said they were excited about was how vocal Kia was," Bent said. "She played so well and at the same time she was so pumped up. I'm excited that I'll have the chance to play with her."
Bent has not yet finalized a date for her official recruiting visit, though the weekend of Oct. 16 that coincides with UConn's First Night program could work since Tabor Academy does not have a soccer game scheduled for that weekend. She'll sign her national letter of intent in November.
Now, back to what number she'll have at UConn.
Bent wears No. 11 with the Breakers and No. 18 in soccer. Nurse already owns 11 at UConn and 18 is unavailable in college basketball.
She laughed when told the story from four years ago that Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis was advised by the coaching staff she had to ask three-time Wade Trophy winner Maya Moore for permission to wear Moore's No. 23.
"If I choose No. 10, I hope they tell me that I have to ask Sue because I would love to have the opportunity to talk to her," Bent said. "That would be so exciting."
But Bent doesn't have to wait for an answer. Bird -- who is quite aware no one has worn No. 10 at UConn since she moved on to the professional ranks with the Seattle Storm -- was asked about it at last month's WNBA All-Star Game at Mohegan Sun Arena.
"If Coach Auriemma thinks that she's good enough to play at Connecticut," Bird said, "she can have it."