It’s never too early to start looking forward!
Check out below our list of 30 impactful diversions for the 2022-23 college basketball season.
Not in any particular order:
House of Nance, North Carolina: How will tar heel replace Brady Manic? this person. The North Carolina 6-10 Nance gives another player an all-conference caliber and the kind of power forward that can open the floor for Armando Bacot in the low post. Nance hit 45.2 percent of the three-point range last season when he was at Northwestern.
Baylor Sherman, Creighton: The Bluejays brought back four major contributors — Ryan Nembhard, Trey Alexander, Arthur Kaluma and Ryan Kalkbrenner — from last year’s team that lost to Kansas in the round of 32, but the addition of Sherman is what could take Creighton to a really different level. Skillful, rational and always in control, this 6-6 seasoned veteran was built specifically for the Greg McDermott system. Sherman averaged 16.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists last season as he led South Dakota State to the NCAA Championship.
Antonio Reeves, Kentucky: Reeves’ sharpshooting made a huge impression on his new team last summer during an overseas tour of the Bahamas, scoring 17 points and firing 51.9 per cent from a three-point range. Having become a focal point over the past few seasons in Illinois, Reeves will now fill in a crucial element in Kentucky as a sniper from a distance.
Jacob Grandison, Duke: Jon Scheyer desperately needed to add experience to his roster and he just got that with Grandison, who’s already played four full seasons of college basketball. The 6-6 winger was a multi-year player for Illinois and was able to stay on the ground regularly thanks to elite shooting (41 percent), strong passing and capable defense. Grandison does all the little things well. Don’t rule him out breaking the starting lineup for the Blue Devils in 2022-23.
Kevin McCullar, KS: McCullar’s versatility and durability are built specifically for Bill Self, who will use this 6-6 major player in various locations on the ground during the upcoming season. McCullar averaged 13.7 points in three NCAA games this past spring for Texas Tech, including a 17-point performance in the Sweet 16 against Duke.
Therese Hunter, Texas: Chris Bird was attracted to Hunter because of his defense. The rest of his game isn’t bad either. Last season’s Big 12 Rookie of the Year was the backbone of the Sweet 16 contest in Iowa this past March and had 11 steals in three NCAA games. Will fit in perfectly with Bird in Austin.
Paradise Emek, Texas Tech: Although file foot injury, Aimaq 6-11, 245 lbs. is our pick to quickly become a fan favorite at Lubbock. Skilled and smooth for his hefty size, Aimaq is also incredibly productive having averaged 18.9 points and 13.6 rebounds last season at Utah Valley including 13 games with at least 15 points and 15 rebounds.
Devon Harmon, Texas Tech: Harmon School III is hoping for the past three years that its end result will be the same as it has been in the past two years – the NCAA Championship. A double-digit scorer in each of the past two seasons for Oregon and Oklahoma respectively, the veteran left-back should play a key role in the backcourt for Mark Adams and Texas Tech.
Gidon Lady, San Diego State: Well-embedded Southern California moles spill out of the mouth when they discuss the potential of the LeDee. LeDee, a former Top 100 recruit, 6-9, is preparing 240 pounds to shine for the Aztecs in power forward during the next season after delaying kindergarten enrollment last year. Lady previously played in both TCU and Ohio State.
Johnny Broome, Auburn: Broome isn’t Jabbari Smith, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be one of the top guys in the SEC this season. After regularly putting in huge numbers at Morehead State, Broome averaged 17.7 points and eight rebounds last summer during Auburn’s overseas tour in Israel, which featured a game with the Israeli national team.
Sean McNeill, Ohio State: McNeil has shot better than 36 percent from a three-point range in each of the past two seasons at West Virginia and will now look to bring that long-range accuracy to Columbus. McNeil keeper scored 6-3 and played eight games last season, hitting three or more out of three points.
Jermaine Quesnard, Oregon: Dana Altman’s decision to hire former Gamecocks assistant Chuck Martin as an assistant helped precipitate Couisnard’s decision to commit to Oregon, where he would form a strong peripheral group alongside Will Richardson. Broad-shouldered and seasoned, he averaged 6-4 Couisnard in double digits during all three years of his college career in South Carolina.
Soleil Baume and Xavier: The 6-3 Bucket Walk had nine games last season, scoring 25 points or more and averaging 18.8 points or more over each of the past two years in the UTEP. Now at Xavier, he’ll join a strong returning core of four players — Adam Kunkel, Colby Jones, Zach Fremantle and Jack Nong — who averaged 8.8 points or more over this past spring season to the Posteason NIT title.
Courtney Ramey, Arizona: Tommy Lloyd needed a veteran guard. Ramy needed a fresh start after four years in Texas. Sounds like a perfect marriage. Don’t be shocked if Archer numbers go up in Lloyd’s high-octane attack. He never averaged 12.2 points during his four years in Austin.
Tristin Newton, Ocon: After rolling out video game-like numbers last season in East Carolina – 17.7 points, five assists, 4.8 rebounds – Newton will now be called upon to be part of a UConn team that fully expects to once again be a top-tier player in the NCAA Championship. Its development is a critical component of the overall ceiling for the Huskies in 2022-23.
Jaylene Llewellyn, Michigan: This is the third consecutive season that Joan Howard brings in a graduate move to the Point Guard and for the third consecutive season, the position will be the biggest question mark in Ann Arbor. Just like his predecessors—Mike Smith (Columbia) and Devante Jones (Costal Carolina)—Llewellyn has the chops to be a productive start in the Big Ten after averaging 15.7 points and 4.1 rebounds a year ago at Princeton.
Nigel Buck, Miami: Hurricanes is quickly building a reputation for its ranger game and the Pack is next in line to join. After averaging 17.4 points last season at Kansas State, the Pack will now be required to share the offensive burden with Isaiah Wong and Jordan Miller as Miami aims to build the momentum created by last spring’s race to the Elite Eight.
Mark Sears, Alabama: Nate Oats was in desperate need of insurance in the backcourt after Jahvon Quinerly injured his knee against Notre Dame at the NCAA Tournament. He earned it with Sears, who was a superstar last season in Ohio, averaging 19.6 points, six rebounds and four assists.
Terence Shannon Jr., Illinois: Brad Underwood has repeatedly demonstrated an interest in Shannon’s work ethic after deciding to move from Texas Tech. Illinois isn’t returning a player who averaged more than 5.9 points last season, which means Shannon – who averaged in double numbers in each of the past two years for the Red Raiders – needs to be ready for the base scoring role if Illini is to compete Once again for the Big Ten regular season title.
Matthew Mayer, Illinois: Like Shannon, Mayer must be a consistent offensive presence for Illinois if he is ever to finish again at the top level of the Big Ten. Although not only has he featured during his four years at Waco, the 6-9 guard has been a key member of the Baylor team that won the 2021 National title and has averaged 8.1 points or more in each of the last two seasons.
Kendrick Davis, Memphis: Moving within the same conference is always an interesting dynamic, but Davis is more than just the center of the spotlight. American Athletic Conference Player of the Year should shine for Memphis at the FedEx Forum, as he aims to do one thing next season he hasn’t yet done in his decorated career – play in the NCAA Championship.
Kyle Lofton, Florida: Lofton did everything except sell popcorn during his four years at Olin and will now get a chance at the Securities and Exchange Commission. A double-digit goalscorer during his four years at St. Bonaventure, this veteran general would play an important role in Florida’s first season under Todd Golden.
Ben Vander Place, Virginia: Vander Place had 17 points and five rebounds when Ohio beat Virginia in the 2021 NCAA Championship. Now he joins the Cavaliers as a transfer graduate, where he is immediately expected to expand his defense. The 6-8 striker scored 67 three-point shots last season for the Bobcats.
KJ Williams, LSU: Every program in the country wanted Williams 6-10 when he put his name into the transfer portal. He chose to head to LSU and play with Matt McMahon, who coached him at Murray State. Williams has averaged 8.5 rebounds over the past two seasons – McMahon will happily settle for that next year in the SEC.
Keon Brooks, Washington: Mike Hopkins plans to feature this skilled 6-7 striker, who had many promising moments during his three years in Kentucky. Brooks should also be a good fit in District 2-3 for Washington, which will be pivotal in whether or not the Huskies can return to the NCAA championship picture.
Manny Bates, Butler: Don’t be shocked if Bates has been the most impactful transfer in the Big East this season. The big guy didn’t play 6-11 last year with a shoulder injury, but he averaged 2.7 blocks two years ago at NC State and 2.9 blocks three years ago as a freshman. Remember the name.
André Corbelo, St John: A year ago, Curbelo was an American in pre-season. Now, it’s a bit of an afterthought. If it’s anywhere in between, that’s good news for Saint John. Look for this New York-born to thrive in Mike Anderson’s hectic regimen as he forms a quick mix of backcountry with Bush Alexander.
David Jones, St. John: Jones became a national name last season when he scored 33 points and grabbed 14 rebounds when DePaul beat Louisville in December. Don’t be shocked if he remains as a national name throughout the 2022-23 season. 6-6 Jones (14.5 points, 7.4 rebounds) is designed to be a small four-man ball in a high-octane Saint John attack and should explode like a red storm volcano.
Grant Sherfield, Oklahoma: Capable of taking over a game by either scoring or facilitating, 6-2 Sherfield is the perfect addition for the Sooners strikers, who averaged just 68.5 points last season. While working in Nevada for the past two years, Sherfield should excel by playing with a better support team. He has averaged 18.9 points, 6.3 assists and 3.9 rebounds over the past two years with the Wolf Pack.
Bryce Hopkins, Providence: Thanks to God-bodied gifts, Hopkins’ 6-7 was a big win for Ed Cooley and Providence after spending only one season in Kentucky. He will aim to make the leap as he is expected to step in as the starting force for the Friars in 2022-23.