2026 6’2 Amari Byles is a proven star on the court, as she is one of the top players in the country and has shown that after a big summer. Not only was able to show that with SA Finest but plans to continue that success at DeSoto this upcoming high school season. Byles had a very busy summer with AAU ball, playing overseas, and now preparing for the season; that doesn’t mention everything going on with her recruitment.
Lady Phenom Hoops had a tremendous opportunity to talk with her about the latest, as we dive into our latest 1-on-1 with ’26 Amari Byles. See what she had to say!
Lady Phenom: We wanted to dive into your game first. How would you best describe your game and how you make your impact on the court?
Byles: I would say I’m a super versatile player. I play very well from the wing, but can play and score from almost anywhere. I think I impacted the game on both ends very well. With not just scoring but other intangibles. Defensively, I tend to disrupt most team’s offense.
Lady Phenom: What are the areas of your game that you wanted to improve on this summer?
Byles: My three-point shooting. Hoping to be more consistent from there.
Lady Phenom: What was this summer like for you overall? What was the experience for you and what all stood out?
Byles: I did the USA trials and had a great experience, then went to Italy shortly after. I feel like the Italy experience really helped me grow as a player and person. I wanted to play professional basketball but was always nervous about going overseas, but spending almost two weeks in Italy without my parents; it really opened my mind up to playing overseas one day. I played one tournament with 16u and went up to 17u with my club team, and I felt like I fit in right away and was a big part of the offense.
Lady Phenom: How did it help you on and off the court with that experience?
Byles: Off the court, it helped me with me feeling more independent and more responsible. On the court, it helped my confidence that I could play against players from other countries and still stand out as one of the younger players. That trip really built my confidence.
Lady Phenom: What is your excitement about the upcoming high school for you?
Byles: One, I’m not a freshman anymore. I know my coach, system, and teammates. Also, I’m excited to try and make another run at states. I’m also excited to show what I added to my game in the offseason.
Lady Phenom: How has everything been going recruiting-wise?
Byles: It has been going very well. Enjoying the recruiting process.
Lady Phenom: Who all has offered you?
Byles: Baylor, UCLA, USC, Iowa, Kentucky, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Florida State, Kansas State, Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Wisconsin, Penn State, Arizona, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, Illinois, and a few others.
Lady Phenom: Illinois is your latest offer. Thoughts on them?
Byles: Being from the Midwest, getting an offer from a Big Ten school is exciting, with the success that Illinois had last year, I’m looking forward to building a relationship with the coaching staff and going to visit sometime this year.
Lady Phenom: You also earned offers from two schools out in California as well, UCLA and USC. Thoughts on each?
Byles: They both are great programs, with awesome coaches and staff. I’m still learning about them both. You would have to ask me that at the end of this season. I plan to watch them more closely this season.
Note: Byles took unofficial visits to UCLA and USC in mid-August
Lady Phenom: What other schools have been really strong with you these days?
Byles: I’ve spoken to a few: Duke, Notre Dame, Louisville, Tennessee, Texas, Auburn, Florida, Mississippi State, and others. I would say I’ve been talking to Notre Dame pretty frequently since the Live Period.
Lady Phenom: Do you have any visits planned?
Byles: We are working on Notre Dame and Iowa. I would like to go to Wisconsin too, since that is where I’m from.