The 2022-2023 college basketball season is coming to a close. Fans will be looking forward to next season, even if it is hard to forecast. Things will be even more up in the air with so many players in the transfer portal. Either way, here is the way too early 2023-2024 college basketball top 25.
25. Providence Friars
New head coach Kim English has convinced Bryce Hopkins and Devin Carter to return giving them a chance to actually improve after the departure of Ed Cooley.
24. Tennessee Volunteers
There are some players who could return for super-senior seasons which could bolster this ranking. The Volunteers are likely to return Zakai Zeigler, but he may not be ready for the start of next season. Rick Barnes has the 17th-ranked recruiting class and has earned the benefit of the doubt.
23. Xavier Musketeers
Adam Kunkel and Souley Boum have exhausted their eligibility. Colby Jones has decided to go pro, but Jack Nunge, Jerome Hunter and Zach Freemantle could all return. The Musketeers have the 13th-ranked recruiting class as well and after Sean Miller exceeded expectations in his first year back at Xavier, they could get some key transfers.
22. TCU Horned Frogs
Eddie Lampkin entered the transfer portal before the season was over. Mike Miles has a decision to make about turning pro. His return could bolster this ranking and so could the return of some seniors for a fifth season.
21. St. Mary’s Gaels
While St. Mary’s exited the tournament in the second round, they do bring back Aidan Mahaney who scored 13.9 points per game last season. With a few other key members returning and Randy Bennett on the sideline, the Gaels can have a similar season in 2023-2024.
20. North Carolina Tar Heels
R.J. Davis and Armando Bacot have stated that they will return to North Carolina. Caleb Love and Puff Johnson have entered the transfer portal. The Tar Heels have some work to do in the transfer portal, but there is some hope with Davis and Bacot back.
19. Northwestern Wildcats
The Wildcats lost a lot last offseason, but had several players step up. Boo Buie and Chase Audige could return for fifth years and really set Northwestern up for success.
18. Texas A&M Aggies
Wade Taylor IV proved to be one of the best guards in the SEC and Julian Marble will return on the interior. After getting a no. 7 seed in this year’s tournament, Buzz Williams has enough returning to improve on that.
17. Baylor Bears
While Keyonte George may be going pro, Adam Flagler could return for a fifth year. LJ Cryer is in the transfer portal. Scott Drew will have to get some transfers in the portal, but the base of a good team is there.
16. Arizona Wildcats
Kerr Kriisa is in the transfer portal and Courtney Ramey has used all of his eligibility. All-American Azuolas Tubelis could return, but that may not be likely. Arizona doesn’t currently have the recruiting class to support losing so much.
15. Gonzaga Bulldogs
Drew Timme has implied that he is going to the next level instead of using a fifth year. Rasir Bolton is out of remaining eligibility, which means the Bulldogs are largely depending on Julian Strawther returning. Mark Few will need to hit the transfer portal hard this offseason.
14. Houston Cougars
Kelvin Sampson and the Cougars are joining the Big 12 next season, which could make things tougher. They could lose Jarace Walker to the NBA Draft and Marcus Sasser, although he could play a fifth season. Tramon Mark and Jamal Shead could return and lead Houston basketball into a new era.
13. Miami Hurricanes
Miami is in the Final Four with a pretty young team. Jordan Miller is the only major contributor in his senior season. Isaiah Wong is a junior that could go pro, but NIL money convinced him to stay last season. With him back, Miami can compete in the ACC again.
12. Kansas Jayhawks
The health of Bill Self will be a major question of the offseason after he missed postseason play. He could be losing several key contributors from this season, including their two leading scorers, Jalen Wilson and Gradey Dick. Kansas has the fifth-ranked recruiting class to help out next season if there are even more losses.
11. Michigan State Spartans
Tom Izzo is getting one of his best recruiting class in years, as the Spartans currently rank third. A.J. Hoggard is returning, while Tyson Walker and Joey Hauser could use super-senior seasons to really help the Spartans.
10. Florida Atlantic Owls
Florida Atlantic made a great run to the Final Four. What is even better for sustained success is that Florida Atlantic has just one senior that plays major minutes.
9. Arkansas Razorbacks
Losing Anthony Black and Nick Smith to the NBA will definitely leave some minutes to fill for next season. Arkansas will return leading scorer Ricky Council and several other key players from a deep Razorbacks’ team this season.
8. Alabama Crimson Tide
Brandon Miller is headed to the NBA, but there is a chance that several other key players return. Mark Sears is projected to be back at point guard, while Jahvon Quinerly could stay for a fifth season. Add in the 13th-ranked recruiting class and Nate Oats can have another good season, albeit without a star of Miller’s status.
7. Creighton Blue Jays
Creighton made the Elite Eight and could bring back several key players. That includes point guard Ryan Nembhard, shooting guard Trey Alexander and center Ryan Kalkbrenner.
6. Duke Blue Devils
Tyrese Proctor just announced his return. He will pair up with Jeremy Roach again in Duke’s backcourt. They will probably lose Kyle Filipowski and Derek Lively to the NBA, but have the second-best recruitign class returning next season.
5. UCLA Bruins
Jaime Jaquez and Tyger Campbell could be finished at UCLA after four seasons. Amari Bailey showed some real growth at the end of the season and could lead the Bruins next season. Jaylen Clark will provide great perimeter defense and a solid scorer when he returns from injury. As with every team on this list, there is a lot up in the air, but the 15th-ranked recruiting class should help.
4. Kentucky Wildcats
For the past few seasons, John Calipari has relied heavily on the transfer portal to build his team. After getting the top recruiting class for next season, he is back to how he formerly built his Kentucky teams. Antonio Reeves and Jacob Toppin could return after great seasons. Cason Wallace and Oscar Tshiebwe are expected to turn pro. The key will be getting a few experienced players to help lead the incoming freshman class, whether that be from their roster last season or from the portal.
3. Marquette Golden Eagles
Marquette received a two seed in Shaka Smart’s first year. They return just about everyone (at the moment), which means expectations will be higher for next season. Tyler Kolek and Cam Jones will create one of the best backcourt duos in the country and could help the Golden Eagles win the Big East again.
2. UConn Huskies
UConn surprised this season by making the Final Four. They will await some decisions about the NBA Draft, but if they return Jordan Hawkins and Adama Sanogo, they will be National Championship contenders once again.
1. Purdue Boilermakers
While they were defeated by a 16-seed, Purdue had a solid season. They started two freshman guards who are expected to take a big leap as sophomores. Zach Edey is not projected to go early in the 2023 NBA Draft, which may convince him to stay in West Lafayette for another season. If he returns there will be plenty of pressure on Matt Painter to advance deep in the tournament.
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