Ranking Top-25 College Basketball Teams For 2023-24 Season (No. 11-15)

Ranking Top-25 College Basketball Teams For 2023-24 Season (No. 11-15)

Today we'll continue with our top-25 rankings and team outlooks for the 2023-24 college basketball season, moving on to teams 11-15.


15. USC

USC has been adding more talent in recent years, but the Trojans are in position to be a serious threat to make a Final Four run going into the 2023-24 campaign. For starters, they landed the No. 1 player in the Class of 2023 in Isaiah Collier, who is one of the best passing freshman to come into the sport in recent memory. Collier still needs to work on his jumper, but he will be fully capable of leading this offense from Day 1. Arguably even bigger than landing Collier, was getting Boogie Ellis to return for a fifth season. The 6-3 guard had a spectacular senior season that saw him put up 17.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 2.5 three-pointers, and 1.4 steals per contest. The Trojans will still have to replace three of their top scorers in Drew Peterson (13.9 PPG), Reese Dixon-Waters (9.8 PPG), and Tre White (9.0 PPG), but they have the firepower to survive those losses. Both Kobe Johnson and Joshua Morgan will return and be one of the best defensive duos in the Pac-12. DJ Rodman also came over after four seasons at Washington State and should be a steady presence in that 3/4 position. USC's stellar recruiting class also included five-star Bronny James, four-star Arrinten Page, and four-star Brandon Gardner, all of who should get a chance to make an impact this season. The X-factor on this team will be Vince Iwuchukwu, who was a five-star recruit in the 2022 cycle, but was limited to just 14 games last season following suffering cardiac arrest during a team workout in the summer. Expect Iwuchukwu to be a big part of the rotation in 2023-24 with a healthy offseason and a lot of skill for his 7-foot-1 frame. 

Projected Starting Lineup:

PG: Isaiah Collier (No. 1 in 2023 class)

SG: Boogie Ellis (17.7 PPG)

SF: Kobe Johnson (9.2 PPG)

PF: DJ Rodman (9.6 PPG at Washington State)

C: Joshua Morgan (7.0 PPG)

Key Reserves: Bronny James (No. 25 in 2023 class), Vince Iwuchukwu (5.4 PPG), Arrinten Page (No. 57 in 2023 class), Kijani Wright (1.9 PPG), Oziyah Sellers (1.1 PPG), Brandon Gardner (Freshman)


14. Creighton

Creighton was a team many thought could reach the Final Four last season given that it brought back a lot of its major contributors from the prior season and added in a do-it-all forward in Baylor Scheierman from South Dakota State. The Bluejays put together a solid campaign, but ultimately fell just short losing to San Diego State in the Elite Eight. While Crieghton will bring back starters Scheierman, Trey Alexander, and Ryan Kalkbrenner for another season, it will have to replace point guard Ryan Nembhard, who left for Gonzaga, and forward Arthur Kaluma, who left for Kansas State. Point guard looks like it will be a pretty smooth transition over to Steven Ashworth, who comes in off a terrific season at Utah State. The other forward slot will likely be a toss up between redshirt sophomore Mason Miller, who was a former four-star recruit of the Bluejays, or Virginia transfer Isaac Traudt, who redshirted last season with the Cavs. My one concern is that this team is relatively thin in the backcourt with Francisco Farabello the only other ball handler I'd trust off the bench. The Bluejays have solid depth in the frontcourt, however, with Johnathan Lawson and Fredrick King contributing some minutes off the bench. Nevertheless, this is going to be a very strong offensive team with a lot of shooting options to throw in, and things will be easier on the other end for everyone with a 7-1 guy like Kakbrenner protecting the rim. 

Projected Starting Lineup:

PG: Steven Ashworth (16.2 PPG at Utah State)

SG: Trey Alexander (13.6 PPG)

SF: Baylor Scheierman (12.8 PPG)

PF: Mason Miller (2.3 PPG)

C: Ryan Kalkbrenner (15.9 PPG)

Key Reserves: Isaac Traudt (Redshirt), Francisco Farabello (3.0 PPG), Fredrick King (3.4 PPG), Johnathan Lawson (3.4 PPG at Memphis)


13. Villanova

It was not a smooth transition to the Kyle Neptune era at Villanova, as the Wildcats went 17-17 and missed the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2011-12 season. The team also had to replace Collin Gillespie and Jermaine Samuels, while Justin Moore played in just 13 games as he recovered from an Achilles injury. Now with a full offseason, Moore will return as a starter for his fifth season, and I think he has a case at a potential Big East Player of the Year run. Last season's leading scorer, Eric Dixon, will also return as the man in the middle and give Villanova some stability at two of the most important positions on the floor. Coach Neptune did an excellent job in the transfer portal and added some impact players in TJ Bamba, Hakim Hart, and Tyler Burton. All three will be starters and give Villanova arguably the best starting five in the country. The lineup has size across the board, experience, shooters, and a defensive presence. The question with this team will be the depth. Mark Armstrong, Jordan Longino, and Chris Arcidiacono will all return to provide some stability in the backcourt, but a lot of pressure will be put on Kentucky transfer Lance Ware to be a reliable frontcourt option when called upon. Ware never found a sizable role in three years with Kentucky, but to be fair, he also was part of a stacked frontcourt. Offseason practices will be key to develop chemistry with the new additions, and if this team avoids injuries to its starting lineup, a Final Four run is definitely within reach. 

Projected Starting Lineup:

PG: Justin Moore (13.5 PPG)

SG: TJ Bamba (15.8 PPG at Washington State)

SF: Hakim Hart (11.4 PPG at Maryland)

PF: Tyler Burton (19.0 PPG at Richmond)

C: Eric Dixon (15.4 PPG)

Key Reserves: Mark Armstrong (5.3 PPG), Jordan Longino (5.0 PPG), Lance Ware (2.0 PPG at Kentucky), Chris Arcidiacono (2.8 PPG), Nnanna Njoku (Injury)


12. Texas A&M

The only significant piece that coach Buzz Williams will have to replace next season is Dexter Dennis (9.5 PPG), but he picked up a couple players in the transfer portal that can both play that small forward position. I think Jace Carter is the favorite to start coming off a sophomore season at UIC in which he put up 16.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 1.8 three-pointers per contest. The other wing is Eli Lawrence, who was a double-digit scorer the last two seasons at Middle Tennessee and developed into a solid three-point shooter. Manny Obaseki is a former top-40 recruit and could be in the mix to start at the three as well going into his junior campaign. Andersson Garcia and Solomon Washington give some solid returning depth in the frontcourt, while Hayden Hefner and Andre Gordon are two more quality options to bring off the bench in the backcourt. This entire team runs through the smallest guy on the court in Wade Taylor, however. He took a major step forward as a sophomore and averaged 16.3 points, 3.9 assists, 2.3 three-pointers, and 1.7 steals per contest. He is going to be in the mix for SEC Player of the Year. Tyrece Radford was the team's second-leading scorer last season and put up 13.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game. Henry Coleman and Julius Marble are two quality frontcourt players who made the Aggies one of the top offensive rebounding teams in the country a year ago. 6-10 big man Wildens Leveque was another late add in the portal that brings 76 starts of experience to the Aggies. I love the make-up and depth of this team going into next season, and it wouldn't surprise me to see them land a top-three seed in NCAA Tournament. 

Projected Starting Lineup:

PG: Wade Taylor (16.3 PPG)

SG: Tyrece Radford (13.3 PPG)

SF: Jace Carter (16.6 PPG at UIC)

PF: Henry Coleman (9.0 PPG)

C: Julius Marble (9.1 PPG)

Key Reserves: Eli Lawrence (12.2 PPG at Middle Tennessee), Manny Obaseki (5.2 PPG), Wildens Leveque (5.5 PPG at UMass), Andersson Garcia (3.2 PPG), Hayden Hefner (3.4 PPG), Solomon Washington (3.2 PPG), Andre Gordon (2.2 PPG)


11. Houston

Houston will face a big test this season transitioning from the American to the Big 12. The Cougars will also be tasked with replacing their two top scorers in Marcus Sasser (16.8 PPG) and Jarace Walker (11.2 PPG), as well as Tramon Mark (10.1), who transferred to Arkansas. The good news is that point guard Jamal Shead will be back to run the offense after averaging 5.4 assists a year ago. He will be joined in a new explosive backcourt that includes transfers LJ Cryer and Damian Dunn. Cryer has been one of the top three-point threats in the Big 12 for the last two years at Baylor, and Dunn has the ability to just go get a bucket when you need it. The upside of the Cougars in 2023-24 likely lies with Terrance Arceneaux who played a limited role as a freshman last season. He is a former top-40 recruit who is an explosive athlete capable of taking the next step and being an impact defender. J'Wan Roberts will return for his fourth season with Houston after averaging 10.0 points, 7.7 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks per game a season ago, but this time won't have a lottery pick in Jarace Walker alongside him. Emanuel Sharp, Ja'Vier Francis, and Ramon Walker will return to add some familiar depth to this team and are capable of filling in should any starter miss time. Mylik Wilson is a great perimeter defender that redshirted last season, but will return to the Cougars after spending time with UL-Lafayette and Texas Tech earlier in his career. Coach Kelvin Sampson's top recruits include Joseph Tugler and Jacob McFarland to add to an overall undersized frontcourt. 

Projected Starting Lineup:

PG: Jamal Shead (10.5 PPG)

SG: LJ Cryer (15.0 PPG at Baylor)

SF: Damian Dunn (15.3 PPG at Temple)

PF: Terrance Arceneaux (3.7 PPG)

C: J'Wan Roberts (10.0 PPG)

Key Reserves: Emanuel Sharp (5.9 PPG), Ja'Vier Francis (4.3 PPG), Ramon Walker (2.9 PPG), Mylik Wilson (Redshirt in 2022-23), Joseph Tugler (No. 73 in 2023 class), Jacob McFarland (No. 97 in 2023 class)


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Ryan  Andrade
Ryan has covered golf, college basketball, and motorsports for RotoWire since 2016. He was nominated for "DFS Writer of the Year" in 2021 by the FSWA.
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