2022-2023 College basketball season preview

Final Standing Predictions:


Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC)



  1. North Carolina Tar Heels
  2. Duke Blue Devils
  3. Miami Hurricanes
  4. Virginia Cavaliers
  5. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
  6. Virginia Tech Hokies
  7. Florida State Seminoles
  8. Wake Forest Demon Deacons
  9. Syracuse Orange
  10. NC State Wolfpack
  11. Clemson Tigers
  12. Boston College Golden Eagles 
  13. Pittsburgh Panthers
  14. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets


Player of the Year: Armando Bacot, North Carolina 

Team to Watch: Miami Hurricanes

Player to Watch: Nijel Pack, Miami Hurricanes



  1. Duke Blue Devils
  2. North Carolina Tar Heels
  3. Miami Hurricanes
  4. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
  5. Virginia Cavaliers
  6. Virginia Tech Hokies
  7. Syracuse Orange
  8. Wake Forest Demon Deacons 
  9. Florida State Seminoles
  10. NC State Wolfpack
  11. Pittsburgh Panthers
  12. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
  13. Clemson Tigers
  14. Boston College Golden Eagles


Player of the Year: Armando Bacot, North Carolina 

Team to Watch: Notre Dame Fighting Irish 

Player to Watch: Jayden Gardner, Virginia 


BIG 10



  1. Michigan Wolverines 
  2. Indiana Hoosiers
  3. Ohio State Buckeyes 
  4. Michigan State Spartans
  5. Purdue Boilermakers
  6. Wisconsin Badgers
  7. Maryland Terrapins 
  8. Illinois Fighting Illini 
  9. Iowa Hawkeyes
  10. Rutgers Scarlet Knights
  11. Penn State Nittany Lions 
  12. Minnesota Golden Gophers 
  13. Northwestern Wildcats
  14. Nebraska Cornhuskers 


Player of the Year: Hunter Dickinson, Michigan 

Team to Watch: Ohio State Buckeyes

Player to Watch: Jalen Pickett, Penn State



  1. Michigan Wolverines
  2. Ohio State Buckeyes
  3. Michigan State Spartans
  4. Indiana Hoosiers
  5. Wisconsin Badgers
  6. Maryland Terrapins
  7. Purdue Boilermakers 
  8. Rutgers Scarlet Knights
  9. Iowa Hawkeyes
  10. Illinois Fighting Illini
  11. Northwestern Wildcats
  12. Minnesota Golden Gophers
  13. Penn State Nittany Lions
  14. Nebraska Cornhuskers


Player of the Year: Trayce Jackson-Davis, Indiana

Team to Watch: Michigan State Spartans 

Player to Watch: Caleb McConnell, Rutgers 


BIG 12



  1. Texas Longhorns
  2. Baylor Bears
  3. Kansas Jayhawks
  4. TCU Horned Frogs
  5. Texas Tech Red Raiders
  6. Oklahoma State Cowboys
  7. Iowa State Cyclones
  8. Oklahoma Sooners
  9. Kansas State Wildcats
  10. West Virginia Mountaineers 


Player of the Year: Tyrese Hunter, Texas

Team to Watch: TCU 

Player to Watch: Fardaws Aimaq, Texas Tech



  1. Baylor Bears
  2. Kansas Jayhawks
  3. Texas Tech Red Raiders 
  4. Texas Longhorns
  5. Oklahoma Sooners
  6. TCU Horned Frogs
  7. Oklahoma State Cowboys
  8. Kansas State Wildcats
  9. Iowa State Cyclones
  10. West Virginia Mountaineers 


Player of the Year: Jalen Wilson, Kansas 

Team to Watch: Texas Tech Red Raiders

Player to Watch: Tyrese Hunter, Texas 


Southeastern Conference (SEC)



  1. Kentucky Wildcats
  2. Tennessee Volunteers
  3. Arkansas Razorbacks
  4. Auburn Tigers
  5. Alabama Crimson Tide
  6. LSU Tigers
  7. Texas A&M Aggies
  8. Florida Gators
  9. Mississippi State Bulldogs
  10. Missouri Tigers
  11. Georgia Bulldogs
  12. Ole Miss Rebels 
  13. South Carolina Gamecocks
  14. Vanderbilt Commodores 


Player of the Year: Oscar Tshiewebe, Kentucky 

Team to Watch: LSU Tigers

Player to Watch: Josiah-Jordan James, Tennessee



  1. Kentucky Wildcats
  2. Arkansas Razorbacks
  3. Alabama Crimson Tide
  4. Tennessee Volunteers
  5. Auburn Tigers
  6. Florida Gators
  7. LSU Tigers
  8. Mississippi State Bulldogs
  9. Texas A&M Aggies
  10. Ole Miss Rebels
  11. Georgia Bulldogs
  12. South Carolina Gamecocks
  13. Missouri Tigers
  14. Vanderbilt Commodores


Player of the Year: Oscar Tshiebwe, Kentucky 

Team to Watch: Auburn Tigers

Player to Watch: Jahvon Quinerly, Alabama 





  1. UCLA Bruins 
  2. Oregon Ducks
  3. Arizona Wildcats
  4. USC Trojans
  5. Stanford Cardinals
  6. Washington Huskies 
  7. Arizona State Sun Devils
  8. Washington State Cougars
  9. Colorado Buffaloes
  10. Utah Utes
  11. California Golden Bears
  12. Oregon State Beavers


Player of the Year: Jaime Jacquez Jr., UCLA 

Team to Watch: Arizona State Sun Devils 

Player to Watch: Keion Brooks Jr., Washington  



  1. Oregon Ducks
  2. UCLA Bruins 
  3. USC Trojans
  4. Arizona Wildcats
  5. Stanford Cardinal 
  6. Arizona State Sun Devils
  7. Washington Huskies
  8. Colorado State Buffaloes
  9. Utah Utes
  10. Washington State Cougars
  11. Oregon State Beavers
  12. California State Golden Bears


Player of the Year: Jaime Jaquez Jr., UCLA

Team to Watch: USC Trojans 

Player to Watch: Ąžuolas Tubelis, Arizona


Big East: 



  1. Creighton Blue Jays
  2. UConn Huskies 
  3. Villanova Wildcats
  4. Xavier Musketeers 
  5. Seton Hall Pirates
  6. St. John’s Red Storm
  7. Providence Friars
  8. Butler Bulldogs
  9. Marquette Golden Eagles 
  10. Depaul Blue Demons
  11. Georgetown Hoyas


Player of the Year: Posh Alexander, St. John’s

Team to Watch: Seton Hall Pirates 

Player to Watch: Nahiem Alleyne, UConn 



  1. Villanova Wildcats
  2. Creighton Blue Jays
  3. UConn Huskies
  4. Xavier Musketeers 
  5. St John’ Red Storm 
  6. Providence Friars
  7. Seton Hall Pirates
  8. Marquette Golden Eagles 
  9. Butler Bulldogs 
  10. Depaul Blue Demons 
  11. Georgetown Hoyas 


Player of the Year: Cam Whitmore, Villanova 

Team to Watch: Creighton Blue Jays 

Player to Watch: Adama Sanogo, UConn


Mid-Major Teams to Watch 


UAB Blazers (C-USA)

The Blazers are coming off of an excellent 2021-2022 campaign, winning the Conference USA tournament and earning a trip to the NCAA Tournament. Unfortunately, head coach Andy Kennedy and the squad saw their Cinderella chances get squashed early, getting dismantled by the Houston Cougars in the opening round. However, the Blazers retooled their team in the offseason acquiring two SEC transfers in Eric Gaines (LSU) and Javian Davis (Mississippi State). Gaines and Davis will play alongside star returning guard Jordan “Jelly” Walker, who averaged 20.3 points, 4.9 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. Kennedy’s team is surely in for another great season, and will definitely compete for another NCAA Tournament bid.   

Liberty Flames (Atlantic Sun)

Liberty will be in the national spotlight, due to the fact that Darius McGhee decided to return for a fifth and final season. McGhee led the Flames last season averaging 24.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 1.2 steals per game. Beyond McGhee, Liberty is returning six of its top seven scorers from a season ago, including three seniors in Kyle Rode, Shiloh Robinson and Blake Preston, who all play in the frontcourt. On the perimeter, Brody Peebles and Joseph Venzant will pack a punch on the scoring end and also provide experience. Experience and scoring is a nice combination for any mid-major, and that is what Liberty has. Expect the Flames to get a tourney bid, while also being a popular upset pick come March.  

Bryant Bulldogs (America East)

Bryant won the Northeast Conference a season ago, behind the NCAA’s leading scorer in Peter Kiss. However, Kiss graduated, and the Bulldogs now need to look elsewhere for answers, joining a new conference in the America East. Despite Kiss’ departure, the Bulldogs will be more than fine, obtaining many new faces, who should provide for a new balanced attacking force. Head coach Jared Grasso is adding a former Top-50 recruit in Earl Timberlake from Memphis, along with a fan favorite in Doug Edert (Saint Peter’s) and many others. Beyond the excellent transfer portal acquisitions, Grasso also has Charles Pride returning to the perimeter, who averaged just short of 18 points and nine rebounds a game for the Bulldogs. Pride, Timberlake and Edert definitely stand as a formidable force in their race for the America East automatic bid in March. 


Saint Mary’s Gaels (WCC)

While Gonzaga is, again, the favorite to win the West Coast Conference (for good reason), I believe Saint Mary’s can once again be the best of the rest in the WCC. Head coach Randy Bennett has been able to build a very strong team for the 2022-23 campaign. Even with the questionable status of the point guard spot, they have a few options that could prove to be winning moves for the Gaels this season. Returning to Saint Mary’s for his sophomore season, Augustas Marciulionis is bound to take a huge step up this season if he is indeed selected to run the point this season. Alongside him is highly talented freshman Aidan Mahaney. Coming out of high school, Mahaney was a highly sought after recruit following a very successful senior season that saw him average almost 20 points a game on 52% shooting from the floor. Historically, the Saint Mary’s defense has been stout, so if past seasons are any indication of how Bennett will run his defense, there should be no problems keeping opposing offenses in check. Watch for Saint Mary’s to make a huge splash in the WCC this season. 

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (C-USA)

When looking at Western Kentucky as a team, look no further than senior Emmanuel Akot. After spending two seasons with both the Arizona Wildcats and the Boise State Broncos, Akot found a new home with the Hilltoppers for his senior season. Akot’s 2021-22 season saw him average almost 11 points per game for the Broncos, making him a monumental addition for Western Kentucky this season. Not to mention that Akot and his six foot eight figure are going to be a huge addition to the Hilltoppers defense, one that gave up 69.2 points per game just a season ago. While not even favored to win their conference this year, Western Kentucky will prove to be lethal on both sides of the ball. Even if they are unable to win the conference, I would not be shocked if the Hilltoppers get an at-large bid come this March.

Towson Tigers (Colonial)

Even in a conference not necessarily touted as one filled with basketball talent, the CAA looks very competitive going into this season. Teams like the Charleston Cougars and UNC Wilmington Seahawks will be very competitive, like always, again this year. Of the competitive teams from the conference this year, I believe the Towson Tigers take the cake. Led by head coach Pat Skerry, who is entering his 12th season at the helm, Towson has seemingly put together one of the best teams that Skerry has had in his tenure. Over the offseason, the Tigers were able to add a grad transfer who was the Division II player of the year last year. Sekou Sylla is a six foot, five inch guard out of Brooklyn, New York, who averaged almost 23 points per game and 11 rebounds last season at Nova Southeastern. Additionally, he shot 58% from the floor last year; that is a ridiculous statline for a guard. While Division I is, of course, a major step up from Division II, if Sylla produces even half of what he did at Nova Southeastern, the Tigers will be in a great position to win the CAA this year. Filled with experience, as the Tigers have seven seniors or graduate students on the roster, Towson will be one of the most impressive mid-major teams as we head into the 2022-23 season.