College Basketball Winners and Losers: Duke, Indiana making the right moves; Louisville, Arizona stumbles

College basketball teams across the country returned to the gym this week for their first official practice of the 2022-23 season, which unofficially ended the unofficial season. While fans must wait several more weeks to see their programming in action, the coaching staff now has a chance to begin molding their teams into teams capable of reaching their full potential.

But before we dive into our 2022-23 season preview, let’s think about what’s out of the season. There are no games played during the summer—except for programs that participate in the international fairgrounds—but there are winners and losers. With the transfer portal crowded months after the season ended and a recruiting cycle that never sleeps, there is little time to rest.

Some programs regrouped their rosters, avoided attrition, and made big commitments in high school. Others dealt with changes in training, lost players through injury and dealt with a large number of outbound transfers. So let’s dive in and put a bow on the holiday season by looking at some of the winners and losers from the past several months.

winner: duke Makes a smooth transition to Scheyer

It wasn’t all roses this season for the Blue Devils, who learn that new five-star student Dark Whitehead needs surgery to fix a broken foot. The injury kept him out of action as Duke began training this week. But regardless of that hiccup, it was a huge surprise to first-year coach John Scheer from an employment perspective. duke rounded First place in the 2022 recruitment category On June 2, when goalkeeper Therese Proctor was re-rated five-star to be eligible for the season. Then, just a few weeks ago, Scheyer added a fifth, five-star prospect to the program’s top-rated 2023 category by taking a commitment from TJ Power. Before Scheyer coached a game, he had two top-tier classes.

loser: Arizona Hard hit by the NBA draft

The NBA draft hit the Wildcats hard. Seeing Benedict Mathurin’s departure was no shock, but with Christian Koloko and Dallen Terry keeping their names in the draft, it leaves second-year coach Tommy Lloyd with a few holes to fill. In the long run, picking three players in one draft is a great selling point in the hiring funnel. In the short term, that means some newcomers will have to beat up the Wildcats to replicate them as Pac-12 champions.

winner: Indiana The stars choose to stay

In an age where career options abound and the transfer portal entices, keeping key parts of the roster can be a bigger win than recruiting new faces. Indiana coach Mike Woodson nailed both elements of the equation this off season. For the second year in a row, Woodson managed to keep dynamic front yard duo Trace Jackson Davis and Reese Thompson together after the season. In addition to keeping those two — along with several other major returnees — the late addition of the top 40 powerhouse striker-powered Renault owner to the Indiana fold helped finish ninth in the nation’s recruiting class. As a result, the uproar around Indiana has grown all over the world.

loser: Louisville Off to slow start under Payne

Sure enough, the uproar over the appointment of Kenny Payne as coach quickly faded. The Cardinal has not done much this season to inspire confidence that the product on the field will improve dramatically after last season’s 13-19 (6-14 ACC) disaster. More specifically, a blatant lack of quality guards on the list may have been an issue after Louisville’s failure to return court assistance through the transfer gate. Two 2023 four-star commitments are an encouraging sign, but five-star guard DJ Wagner is the big prize Payne needs to get the program going.

winner: Creton Builds the best roster in the Big East

Add Previous South Dakota Star Baylor Sherman, No. 16 in our off-season move, Creighton sent the hype up to speed in May. With three double-digit scorers returning from their Sweet 16 debut in the modern NCAA championship era, the Bluejays sit 11th in Gary Parrish’s pre-season Top 25 and 1. This makes Creighton the Big East the highest-rated team entering the season. with Villanova Is subject to the transfer of training and Providence Reloaded, Scheierman’s addition makes this team a solid choice to win the league.

Loser: Villanova has a big shoe to fill

In addition to Jay Wright’s sudden retirement and move to coach Kyle Neptune, the Wildcats are dealing with the harsh reality that returning lead scorer Justin Moore is likely to miss the early part of the season after rupturing his Achilles tendon in the Elite Eight. His rehabilitation, combined with the departures of veteran broadcasters Colin Gillespie and Jermaine Samuels, created a rebuilding situation of sorts for Vilanova. With no prospects yet committed as part of the 2023 program category, Neptune has a big year ahead as it takes on the unenviable task of replacing the myth.

winner: Oregon Finds success in recruiting trail

Life, Death, and Taxes Dana Altman makes great additions to the Oregon basketball roster. After landing Kwame Evans Jr. , potential No. 11 overall of the 2023 class on August 2, the Ducks received a commitment from Mookie Cook No. 10 10 days later. These big wins on the track drove the Oregon 2023 class to #7 in the 247Sports team rankings and continued the program’s strong recruitment success under Altman’s leadership.

loser: Texas Tech Transfer to start the season

Don’t doubt what Mark Adams can do with a set of transfers. That was the lesson learned last season when Adams took over after the departure of Chris Bird Texas And he led a patchwork roster to the Sweet 16. Repeating that success again this season will be a challenge since the crown jewel of the TTU transfer class, Fardaws Aimaq is dealing with a foot injury expected to keep him out for several months. As No. 5, Aimaq ended our off-season transfer after a prolific run in Utah Valley As a big two-way guy. Texas Tech’s chances of competing for the Big 12 title may depend in large part on his health, and it’s frustrating to start pre-season practice with Aimaq on the sidelines.

winner: Virginia brings talents

Sometimes it feels like Virginia has fallen off a cliff since winning the 2019 National Championship. The Cavaliers haven’t won an NCAA Tournament since — although the 2020 team didn’t stand a chance due to COVID-19 — and they lost Big Dance 2022. But the truth is UVA is still 40-17 in the ACC for the past three seasons, which would be considered a huge success by the standards of 85% of programs across the country. Now, after coach Tony Bennett’s big season, it looks like the Cavaliers are ready to return to the top at the national level. The top six seed is back from last season, and they are joined by permanent All-MAC striker Ben Vander Plas Ohio With four seasons of high-profile college play under his belt. With the nation’s 13th enlistment class registered as well, Bennett has everything he needs to bring Virginia’s elite back in.

loser: Clemson Loaded with questions

There is no timetable for the return of the Tigers’ top scorer, PJ Hall, after off-season knee surgery. That could put the Tigers in a precarious position to start the season in the wake of the 17-16 (8-12 ACC) campaign. With double-digit scorers Prince Dawes and David Collins leaving last season’s roster, coach Brad Brownell may need to find significant production from previously untapped sources if Clemson is to build a good resume early in the season.

Winner: The return of the best players TCU

After a close upset with top-ranked Arizona in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, it appears The Horned Frogs have decided to restart them. The six top scorers are back and Oklahoma Rondel Walker joins in to add depth of quality. Keeping an Offseason roster rarely makes headlines, but with the TCU returning so many of its first team in 35 years to win the NCAA Championship game, the Horned Frogs are the big off-season winners.

Loser: Uncertainty reigns in Georgia Tech

It’s time for Year 7 coach Josh Bastner to pitch his player development pieces once again. After an ACC title in 2021 led by Moses Wright, the Yellow Vests need someone to break out like Wright mid-career. There was no double-digit top scorer last season, and we can expect fruitful Lance Terry transfers (Gardner Weband Javon FranklinSouth Alabama) to seamlessly translate to ACC. Blue Cain’s forthcoming four-star commitment in June was impressive, but with Georgia Tech undergoing a change of sporting director, Bastner may be under heavy scrutiny to enter the 2022-23 season.

winner: Dayton Keeps the momentum going

Dayton is not an average program for the mill – not in any way. However, in this era, any program outside of a host of the biggest sports brands will have to hold their breath when the season is over when it comes to retaining the best young talent. However, the off-season Flyers emerged as the big winners by bringing back the top seven scorers from the team 24-11. In particular, true rookie stars from last season’s DaRon Holmes II, Rookie of the Year, and promising point guard Malachi Smith are back and look like they can anchor the program for the next three seasons.

loser: Oregon Don’t do much to improve it

The Beavers continued their Magical Elite Eight of the 2021 NCAA Championship with Season 3-28 (1-19 Pac-12). So what have they done this off-season to bring the program back to efficiency? Too little, it seems. The top five are leaving, so unless the country’s 81st-ranked inductee class beats expectations, this could be another long season. This would have been an excellent vacation for the Beavers to make some noise in the gate, but their transfer additions don’t inspire confidence that a return to post-season glory is imminent.

Winner: The stars align with Saint Louis

Like Flyers, St. Louis has made the Top 25 and #1 in Paris after Quality List developments. First, Billikens brought the program’s all-time passing leader, Yuri Collins, back from the transfer gate after leading the nation in assists at an average of 7.9 assists per game last season. Subsequently, star winger Jafonte Perkins was given full medical clearance after missing the 2021-22 season due to a ruptured ACL. Perkins was a player in all of the pre-season first-team conferences prior to the 2021-22 season. His return alongside Collins and elite three-point shooter Gibson Jimerson makes St. Louis a good bet to reach the NCAA Championship.

loser: Washington State The main player in G League loses

Washington State lost Evie Abujedi to G League Ignite in June after spending two years playing a major role for the Cougars. Previously, the CDP emerged as a competitor for elite talent in high schools, but Ignite’s idea of ​​capturing college players is a novelty. Aboughedi’s loss means Washington State must replace the top four scorers after it went a long way in coach Kyle Smith’s third season.

Winner: White Rights Ship in Georgia

Say what you will about Georgia’s uninspiring rental for a SEC competitor FloridaMelquitost coach, but the Bulldogs will obviously improve immediately in Mike White’s first year after a good season. Leading goalscorers from last season’s train wreck have returned to Carrillo Oquendo and Brillene Bridges, as well as veteran striker producer Jilin Ingram, who missed all but nine of last season’s games. With three two-digit conversions coming from the transfer portal and additions from AlabamaOklahoma and Syracuse Also, White has the ingredients to make immediate progress and at least get the Bulldogs back to a competitive baseline after last season’s 6-26 (1-17 SEC) mark under Tom Crean.

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