HP Preseason Top 60 College Basketball Teams

HP Rank

Team

1-25

26-50

51-

100

101-

200

201-

400

401-

600

600+

Total

Avg Age

AP

Poll

Coach

Poll

1

North Carolina

0

2

2

1

3

1

2

11

20.8

1

1

With the return of Caleb Love, Armando Bacot, Leaky Black, and RJ Davis, North Carolina retains the majority of the championship-appearing roster for the 2023 season. The team has experience and talent and is also led by Coach Hubert Davis. The only blemish that could be pointed out is shooting. Transfer Pete Nance, who shot 45.2 percent at Northwestern, will replace Brady Manek at the power forward position. Nance managed to attempt only 3.1 three-point shots a game, and it will be important that he maintains his efficiency with presumably more volume with the Tar Heels. Regardless, this is a championship-or-bust roster that has all of the keys to success.

2

Gonzaga

0

2

2

2

2

2

1

11

21.0

2

2

Gonzaga once again comes in highly ranked, even with the loss of Chet Holmgren and Andrew Nembhard, both of whom departed for the NBA. Mainly because of one of college basketball's best players, Drew Timme, Gonzaga has positioned itself as a threat once again for the National Championship. Transfer Malachi Smith is a guard who will help replace Nembhard's production with his efficient scoring ability, averaging 19.9 points a game and shooting 40.7 percent from three with Chattanooga last season. The depth surrounding the core of Timme, Smith, Julian Strawther, and Rasir Bolton is among the best in college basketball.

3

Kentucky

3

1

0

2

4

0

1

11

20.8

4

4

Kentucky exited last season's tournament shockingly after 15-seed Saint Peter’s defeated Big Blue in the first round. The Wildcats still had one of the best teams in college basketball, and seemingly improved with their additions. Kentucky secured a top-five recruiting class that includes five-star prospects Carson Wallace and Chris Livingston. Oscar Tshibwe, the reigning National Player of the Year, returns, adding proven ability to the Wildcats' vast untapped potential.

4

Tennessee

1

0

2

2

1

2

2

10

20.8

11

11

The Vols retained many of their top scorers from last season's third-seeded NCAA Tournament team. Josiah-Jordan James, a two-way wing, and sharpshooter Santiago Vescovi are the most notable of the returning players. Although the loss of Kennedy Chandler to the NBA will hurt, Tennessee has the speedy Zakai Zeigler ready to lead the offense.  Also, five-star Julian Phillips, a top-ranked freshman forward out of South Carolina, and transfer guard Tyreke Key figure to be major contributors. With the Tennessee core paired with versatile depth, expect the Vols to have better success than they did last year.

5

Texas

2

0

0

5

0

1

1

9

21.4

12

12

Undeniably a talented group, Coach Chris Beard and the Texas Longhorns look ready to finally fulfill their potential. Marcus Carr and Timmy Allen, two of the team’s top shot creators, are returning. Five-star recruits Dillion Mitchell and Arterio Morris and Iowa State guard Tyrese Hunter join the team, with the latter adding tremendous playmaking ability. There could be some offensive issues early on, mainly a lack of shooting. Allen, Carr, and Hunter are all below-average three-point shooters. Texas needs some threats from deep to emerge, with Morris being a prime candidate. The team will likely mesh as the season goes on, and with their depth and defensive capability, the Longhorns will be a dangerous foe in March.

6

Houston

1

1

1

2

0

2

2

9

20.3

3

3

The Houston Cougars are deep, experienced, and have a good mix of returning players and high-end recruits to add to their already stellar coaching staff. Freshmen Jacrace Walker, the number-10 overall ranked player in his class, and Terrance Arceneaux should add more scoring and athleticism to one of the best defensive teams in college. The return of injured guards Tramon Mark and Marcus Sasser will bolster the team’s shooting and create havoc on defense, as both averaged over 1.4 steals a game. The Cougars are clearly the most talented team in the AAC and could have another Final-Four run this season.

7

UCLA

1

2

1

1

1

0

3

9

20.5

8

7

The Bruins have much to look forward to this year. Five-star freshman Amari Bailey joins this experienced UCLA team, bringing his athleticism and two-way potential to the wing. Although Johnny Juzang (15.6 PPG) and Jules Bernard (12.8 PPG) will not be easily replaced, the Bruins retained point guard Tygar Campbell and forward Jaime Jaquez, and also added freshmen Adam Bona (center) and Dylan Andrews (guard), both of whom should make an impact this season. The Bruins' defense is questionable, but have an unquestionable offensive core that will make noise in the NCAA Tournament.

8

Creighton

1

1

1

2

0

1

2

8

20.6

9

9

The Creighton Bluejays are an interesting team. Coming off their second-round loss to the eventual National Champion, the Kansas Jayhawks, the Bluejays must be extremely encouraged. The Bluejays gave KU a good fight without their starting point guard and center. Lead guard Ryan Nembhard is back for his second season, recovered from a broken wrist, and star big man Ryan Kalkbrenner is healthy again and looks primed for a great year. Sophomore forward Arthur Kaluma carried the team during March Madness and is a high-level pro prospect, while transfer wing Baylor Scheierman is a do-everything player, who adds much-needed 3-point shooting.  Creighton was not ranked this last season, but with their returning players and additions, this team is a serious Final Four contender.

9

Arkansas

2

1

1

1

1

2

3

11

20.1

10

10

Coach Eric Musselman is building a powerhouse in Fayetteville. Arkansas lost most of the stars from last season’s Elite Eight squad:  JD Notae, Jaylin Williams, Stanley Umude, and Au’Diese Toney all left the Razorbacks to play professionally. However, with an aggressive approach to reload, they should have continued success in the tournament. Led by a trio of five-star-freshmen, Nick Smith, Jordan Walsh, and Anthony Black, who are all presumably one-and-done players, the Razorbacks have as much athleticism as any team in the country.  The team has some veteran talent as well with returning guard Davonte Davis and two transfers, forward Trevon Brazile and wing Ricky Council. Arkansas will look much different on the court this season but has the talent to have similar success as last season.

10

Duke

3

0

2

1

1

0

2

9

19.8

7

8

With Hall of Fame Coach Mike Krzyzewski retired and coming off a loss in the Final Four to North Carolina, first-year head coach Jon Scheyer takes the reins of a loaded team. Headlined by freshman center Dereck Lively II and freshman wing Dariuq Whitehead, two likely one-and-done players that are potential lottery picks, along with veteran guard Jeremy Roach, the Blue Devils are talented. The rest of Duke’s top-ranked recruiting class includes another five-star freshman in Kyle Filipowski, a stretch four/five.  Of course, with a first-year coach, there will be questions, but Scheyer was a longtime assistant to Krzyzewski and has been groomed to be successful.

11

Kansas

0

1

1

2

4

1

2

11

20.2

5

5

The National Champion Kansas Jayhawks lost a significant amount of their championship team. Lottery pick Ochai Agbaji and Christian Braun both left Kansas to play in the NBA. Coach Bill Self was also suspended four games to start the reason. Regardless, Kansas still has plenty of talent coming into the year. Jalen Wilson, Dajuan Harris, and Joseph Yusefu all were on the championship roster. They also have added five-star prospect Gradey Dick, an excellent shooting wing, and Texas Tech transfer guard Kevin McCullar, who brings toughness and defense to KU.

12

Baylor

1

0

2

1

2

1

0

7

21.8

6

6

The Baylor Bears have been one of the most successful programs in recent memory, and that success is likely to continue this year. The story is about Keyonte George, the star freshman guard who will look to lead this team on Day One. Baylor also has returning players who will make big impacts, such as LJ Cryer and Adam Flagler, two double-digit scorers from last season. The Bears, however, are small; three projected starters are under 6’5”. Defensively, this could be an issue, especially early in the season while center Jonathan Tchatchoua recovers from a knee injury. Offensively, though, Baylor will be an exciting, fast-paced team. If the team communicates and plays aggressive team defense to hide their lack of size, Baylor could be an Elite Eight team.

13

Auburn

0

0

2

3

2

1

1

9

20.8

15

15

Coach Bruce Pearl and the Auburn Tigers are in a much different position than they were last year. The Tigers earned a two seed in the NCAA Tournament, led by their ultra impressive frontcourt of Jabari Smith and Walker Kessler. Both declared for the NBA draft and now are playing regular minutes for NBA teams. However, the guards that helped them reach the second seed all return:  K.D. Johnson, Wendell Green, and Allen Flanigan.  A former high-level draft prospect before suffering an Achilles injury, Flanigan is the wildcard of the group, as he clearly wasn’t 100 percent last season.  Promising transfer Johni Broome and returning junior Dylan Cardwell will attempt to replace Kessler, while two top-40 recruits, Chance Westry and Yohan Traore, will absorb many of Smith’s minutes.  The two departed first-round picks were responsible for highly efficient scoring and elite defense, but Coach Pearl has the pieces to make a serious run at the SEC Title.

14

Alabama

0

1

1

3

2

2

1

10

20.8

20

19

Alabama and Coach Nate Oats are in an intriguing position coming into the year. They have one of the top recruiting classes in the country that includes wing Brandon Miller and guard Jaden Bradley. Noah Gurley and Charles Bediako, the team's two main interior players from last season, both return. Three-and-D wing Nimari Burnett, who missed last season with an injury, is a promising player to watch, and the Tide also landed guard Mark Sears from Ohio; he averaged 19.7 points and shot 40.8 percent from three last season. With that being said, the Crimson Tide faces some early injury concerns, as dynamic senior guard Jahvon Quinerly is still recovering from a torn ACL and is not projected to return until December at the earliest. Until Quinerly is recovered, either Sears or Bradley will have to lead the offense.  The Crimson Tide are very talented, but youth and chemistry might hold them back from making a long run in March.

15

Villanova

1

0

1

2

2

1

3

10

20.7

16

17

After Coach Jay Wright surprisingly retired, the Villanova Wildcats' roster concerns became more worrisome. Staters Justin Moore, Eric Dixon, and Brandon Slater, plus sixth man Caleb Daniels, are all returning to school after last season's Final Four appearance. However, Moore is recovering from a torn Achilles, and he was the heir apparent to replace team leader and point guard Collin Gillespie, who moved on to the NBA.  Five-star freshman forward Cam Whitmoore, another important piece for the Wildcats, is recovering from a thumb injury and will not be ready for the start of the season. With former assistant Kyle Neptune taking over for Wright and key players out with injuries, it is likely Villanova starts slow. It will be a while until they are fully healthy and reach their true potential.

16

Arizona

0

1

0

2

5

0

2

10

20.0

17

13

The Arizona Wildcats were a one seed in last year’s NCAA Tournament, and are not projected to reach that level again with their current roster. Ben Mathurin, Dalen Terry, Christain Koloko, and Justin Kier are all playing in either the NBA or the G-League, and the scoring and defense those individual players provided will not be easily replaced. Returning guards Kerr Krissa and Pelle Larsson plus Texas transfer Courtney Ramey will be looked at to replace the production on the perimeter, while big man Oumar Ballo and stretch four Azuolas Tubelis will need to hold down the paint and increase their volume on offense. A wildcard on the roster is freshman Henri Veesaar, a stretch big who posted impressive numbers last season with Real Madrid’s under-18 team.  

17

Indiana

1

0

1

1

2

2

2

9

20.8

13

14

Coach Mike Woodson and the Indiana Hoosiers have the talent to compete for the Big Ten Championship. Led by returning two-way monster Trayce Jackson-Davis and the tough Race Thompson, Indiana should be dominant on the interior. The key to this team will be their three-point shooting and guard play. Last season, Indiana ranked 321st in three-point attempt rate, and no returning player averaged more than 1.1 threes made per game.  The Hoosiers’ impressive freshman class includes point guard Jalen Hood, who will be the x-factor for this team.   If the 6-foot-6 point guard can hit from the outside, the combination of the freshman and Jackson-Davis could unlock a completely different Hoosier offense.

18

Illinois

0

0

3

2

1

1

3

10

20.4

23

23

Illinois lost Kofi Cockburn, the dominant big man that caused havoc on both ends of the floor. They will not replace his production with one person, but the team remains talented. Freshman Sky Clark, an NBA hopeful, will now lead this team as the point guard, replacing the departed Trent Frazier (pros) and Andre Curbelo (St. Johns). Versatile-wing transfer Matthew Mayer and former Texas Tech guard Terrence Shannon Jr. will have more opportunities to develop their offense. Holdover forwards RJ Melendez and Coleman Hawkins have NBA potential.  Illinois is a talented team with real depth, but much of the team’s success is in the hands of the unproven Clark.

19

Virginia

0

0

1

0

4

3

2

10

20.6

18

18

The Virginia Cavaliers did not lose much and are coming into this season with much more confidence. Tested players, such as Jayden Gardner, Armaan Franklin, and Kihei Clark, are returning for another season under Coach Tony Bennett. Junior guard Reece Beekman has the most pro potential on the roster and is a breakout candidate, while freshman big man Isaac Traudt should contribute immediately as a floor spacer.  Last season, the Cavaliers won two games in the NIT, but with the current roster, it's evident they are planning on making the tournament this time around. Coach Bennett runs a slow-paced offense, so as long as players are shooting well, this team will see an improvement in their 12-8 record in the ACC.

20

Xavier

1

0

1

0

2

3

2

9

21.0

33

44

The Xavier Musketeers are coming in with a deep, versatile team that is looking for a tournament selection. The return of Coby Jones, Zach Freemantle, and Jack Nunge after playing together last year will prove beneficial for Xavier. Desmond Claude could be the Musketeers' point guard for the future as well, and he will get plenty of opportunities to play in his freshman year. Xavier could realistically play an 8-man rotation and should have tournament aspirations this year under new head coach Sean Miller.

HP Rank

Team

1-25

26-50

51-

100

101-

200

201-

400

401-

600

600+

Total

Avg Age

AP

Poll

Coach

Poll

21

Michigan

0

0

1

1

1

1

7

11

20.5

22

22

The Michigan Wolverines and Coach Juwan Howard had a season to remember last year. After underperforming as a team most of the season, the Wolverines surprised everyone with a Sweet 16 appearance, led by big-man Hunter Dickinson and the guard tandem Eli Brooks and DeVante Jones. With Brooks, Jones, Moussa Diabate, and Caleb Houstan all gone, the team will have a completely different starting lineup, with the exception of Dickinson. In the backcourt, Princeton transfer Jaelin Llewellyn, who averaged 15.8 points last year, will be paired with sophomore Kobe Bufkin, a former top-50 recruit.  Freshman Jett Howard, a promising pro prospect, and Duke transfer Joey Baker, another former top-50 recruit, are among the options at forward, and they should provide better spacing than Diabate did last season.

22

Miami (FL)

0

0

1

1

2

0

7

11

20.6

28

28

The Miami Hurricanes lost two of their top scorers in guards Kameron McGusty and Charlie Moore. Isaiah Wong, who averaged 15.3 points last year, will be given an even bigger scoring role, and he will be paired with Kansas State transfer Nijel Pack, who averaged 17.4 PPG while shooting a scorching 43.6 percent from three last season.  Holdovers Jordan Miller and Wooga Poplar figure to man the wing spots, while transfer Norchad Omier will likely start in the middle.  The team lacks height and proven depth, but the Pack-Wong backcourt tandem will be exciting and score a lot of points.

23

Texas Tech

0

0

0

1

5

0

3

9

20.9

25

24

Coach Mark Adams has a great system and seems to put players in positions where they can succeed, but the Red Raiders lost a lot of talent. Bryson Williams (14.1 PPG), Terrence Shannon Jr. (10.4 PPG), and Kevin McCullar (10.1 PPG) all departed. Transfer De’Vion Harmon will likely take over the point guard position, and he is an inefficient shoot-first player, who averaged 2.1 assists on 1.5 turnovers for Oregon last season. If Harmon is not up to the task, the team may have to turn to freshman Richard Isaacs.  Transfer Fardaws Aimaq is a rebounding machine, but he will miss the start of the season due to injury. In his second season with Tech, forward Kevin Obanor will get more opportunities and should get back to his scoring efficiency that he displayed with Oral Roberts. The most promising pieces are sophomore big man Daniel Batcho, sophomore wing Jaylon Tyson, and freshman wing Elijah Fisher, but as a group, they are untested.  It will take time for this team to come together on the offensive end, but the Red Raiders will always be competitive thanks to tenacious defense.

24

Dayton

0

1

0

2

1

1

1

6

20.5

24

25

The Dayton Flyers went 24-11 last season, and just narrowly missed the NCAA Tournament. The Flyers did not lose anyone of importance, and the returning core is very promising.  DaRon Holmes and Toumani Camara combine to give the team an athletic frontcourt, and guards Malachi Smith, Koby Brea, and Kobe Elvis can shoot.  Smith is also an excellent floor general.  The x-factor on the team is freshman Mike Sharavjamts, a do-everything point forward.  

25

Florida

0

0

1

1

4

1

2

9

20.9

38

41

The Florida Gators interestingly have compiled an intriguing team under new head coach Todd Golden. Forward Anthony Duruji, wing Phlandrous Fleming, and guard Tyree Appleby are all gone, but their replacements may be an upgrade.  The incoming transfers include ultra-athletic forward Alex Fudge and all-around wing Will Richard.  Also former transfers CJ Felder and Myreon Jones plus sophomore Kowacie Reeves might flourish offensively in a new system.  The star of the team will be two-way big man Colin Casleteton, who returns as a “super” senior after  averaging 16.2 points and 9.0 boards along with 2.2 blocks last year. He will be paired with transfer point guard Kyle Lofton, who averaged 5.8 assists last year with St. Bonaventure.

26

Ohio State

0

0

0

0

5

4

1

10

21.1

35

42

27

TCU

0

1

0

1

3

2

0

7

22.0

14

16

28

Connecticut

0

1

1

1

2

2

0

7

20.6

27

29

29

Michigan State

0

0

0

1

4

1

3

9

20.9

31

30

30

Oregon

1

0

1

1

2

1

0

6

21.3

21

21

31

USC

0

0

1

2

2

1

3

9

20.4

39

35

32

Florida State

0

0

2

0

3

1

2

8

20.2

32

33

33

Purdue

0

0

1

0

2

1

4

8

20.6

29

26

34

Texas A&M

0

0

0

1

1

4

1

7

21.3

26

27

35

LSU

0

0

0

3

3

0

4

10

20.7

36

Virginia Tech

0

0

0

2

1

2

3

8

21.2

40

36

37

Notre Dame

0

0

1

2

0

1

3

7

21.0

41

38

Syracuse

0

0

1

1

1

1

3

7

20.2

34

39

San Diego State

0

0

0

1

1

1

0

3

23.3

19

20

40

Providence

0

0

0

0

3

0

4

7

21.0

31

HP Rank

Team

1-25

26-50

51-

100

101-

200

201-

400

401-

600

600+

Total

Avg Age

AP

Poll

Coach

Poll

41

Iowa State

0

0

0

1

1

2

2

6

21.8

43

42

Arizona State

0

0

1

1

3

0

2

7

21.3

43

Maryland

0

0

0

2

2

1

3

8

21.1

44

Stanford

0

1

0

1

1

1

4

8

20.6

45

Seton Hall

0

0

1

0

2

2

2

7

21.8

46

Oklahoma St.

0

0

1

1

2

1

1

6

21.1

47

Louisville

0

0

0

0

2

2

4

8

20.3

48

Wyoming

0

0

0

1

1

2

0

4

21.5

34

38

49

Rutgers

0

0

1

0

2

1

0

4

22.3

37

45

50

Iowa

0

1

0

0

0

1

1

3

21.3

36

32

51

UAB

0

0

0

1

2

0

0

3

22.5

43

40

52

Saint Louis

0

0

0

0

3

1

0

4

22.8

30

53

Memphis

0

0

0

1

1

0

2

4

22.9

42

54

Wisconsin

0

0

0

0

1

2

1

4

20.7

39

55

Saint Mary's

0

0

0

0

0

3

1

4

21.0

37

56

Boise State

0

0

0

0

1

1

2

4

21.0

48

57

Oklahoma

0

0

0

1

2

2

2

7

21.0

58

Washington St.

0

0

1

0

2

2

2

7

20.5

59

VCU

0

0

0

1

1

1

4

7

20.6

60

Toledo

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

1

23.4

44

46