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2024-25 Way-too-early Top 25 college basketball rankings 5.0: Marquee transfers find new homes

James Fletcher IIIby:James Fletcher III05/06/24


The picture of what college basketball will look like in 2024-25 is starting to gain clarity, with several top transfers finding new homes after the portal closed. Plenty of other transfer decisions and late movement on the recruiting trail will continue to shape future way-too-early Top 25 updates.

Before getting into the top contenders next season, there are some rules to the exercise which must be noted. Some teams, players and coaches still have decisions to make before the tip off, so the list is always in flux. Here are the guidelines you need to know:

  • All NBA Draft decisions will not be made for the player, despite the early entry deadline. They are considered back unless they have been listed in the latest On3 Mock Draft. Any other decisions will be accounted for when the player announced their plan moving forward. In addition, this is the final year of COVID eligibility rules, and each roster has been traced the best it can to determine which players hold additional eligibility. Waivers and senior decisions will shape the final roster.
  • Teams without a full rotation of returning and incoming players at the time of ranking were not considered. They will be added into the mix after adding to the roster on the recruiting trail or through the transfer portal.

Here is a way-too-early look at what the Top 25 rankings could look like in the 2024-25 season.

1. Alabama

Key returns: Mark Sears*, Grant Nelson, Latrell Wrightsell, Jarin Stevenson*
Key additions: Derrion Reid, Aidan Sherrell, Houston Mallette, Chris Youngblood, Naas Cunningham, Aden Holloway, Labaron Philon, Clifford Omoruyi
Key departures: Aaron Estrada, Rylan Griffen, Nick Pringle, Sam Walters

Alabama made big headlines once again this week by adding former Rutgers center Clifford Omoruyi to the starting lineup. The Crimson Tide is now talented and deep at every positions with only two NBA Draft decisions left from Mark Sears and Jarin Stevenson.

2. Kansas

Key returns: Dajuan Harris, KJ Adams, Hunter Dickinson
Key additions: Zeke Mayo, Riley Kugel, Flory Bidunga, AJ Storr*, Rakease Passmore, Rylan Griffen
Key departures: Kevin McCullar Jr., Nick Timberlake, Johnny Furphy*

Bill Self has made big splashes in the transfer portal to cement Kansas as a top team in the country. After adding AJ Storr, the Jayhawks brought in Rylan Griffen but lost incoming freshman Labaron Philon last week.

3. Houston

Key returns: LJ Cryer, J’Wan Roberts, Emanuel Sharp, Ja’Vier Francis, Terrance Arceneaux
Key additions: Milos Uzan*
Key departures: Damian Dunn, Jamal Shead

Houston was passed by Kansas for the top spot after more additions, and now by Alabama. The Cougars roster remains inside the Top Five with plenty of continuity giving them an edge against others.

4. UConn

Key returns: Alex Karaban*, Hassan Diarra, Samson Johnson
Key additions: Tarris Reed, Ahmad Nowell, Liam McNeeley, Aidan Mahaney
Key departures: Tristen Newton, Donovan Clingan, Stephon Castle, Cam Spencer

UConn made a splash in the transfer portal, and now on the recruiting trail for landing five-star forward Liam McNeeley after his de-commitment from Indiana.

5. Baylor

Key returns: Langston Love, Jayden Nunn
Key additions: VJ Edgecombe, Rob Wright, Jason Asemota, Jeremy Roach*, Norchad Omier*
Key departures: Ja’Kobe Walter, Yves Missi, RayJ Dennis, Jalen Bridges

Baylor bounced back up the way-too-early Top 25 by adding a weekend commitment from former Miami center Norchad Omier. The talent level and experience will make the Bears a contender.

6. Duke

Key returns: Tyrese Proctor, Caleb Foster
Key additions: Cooper Flagg, Khaman Maluach, Isaiah Evans, Kon Knueppel, Patick Ngongba, Darren Harris, Maliq Brown, Mason Gillis
Key departures: Kyle Filipowski, Jared McCain, Mark Mitchell, Jeremy Roach

The No. 1 recruiting class belongs to Duke and Jon Scheyer. Top-ranked recruit Cooper Flagg is joined by a talented group on the way in, plus a clear transfer portal plan to add around them starting to play out.

7. Iowa State

Key returns: Keshon Gilbert, Tamin Lipsey, Curtis Jones, Milan Momcilovic
Key additions: Nate Heise, Dishon Jackson, Brandton Chatfield, Joshua Jefferson
Key departures: Tre King, Robert Jones, Hason Ward

Iowa State added Joshua Jefferson to a group which already promised to enter the season inside the Top 10 of the preseason rankings. The Cyclones looks ready for another year atop the analytic machines.

8. Gonzaga

Key returns: Graham Ike, Ryan Nembhard, Nolan Hickman, Ben Gregg, Braden Huff, Steele Venters
Key additions: Michael Ajayi*, Khalif Battle
Key departures: Anton Watson

Gonzaga once again added to the backcourt with former Arkansas guard Khalif Battle committing to play alongside fellow newcomer Michael Ajayi. Paired with a talented cast of returners, this promises to be a bounce back year.

9. Auburn

Key returns: Johni Broome, Chad Baker-Mazara, Denver Jones, Dylan Cardwell
Key additions: Tahaad Pettiford, JP Pegues
Key departures: Jaylin Williams, Aden Holloway, KD Johnson, Tre Donaldson

Auburn got a transfer portal commitment from JP Pegues, adding to their collection of backcourt talent heading into next season beside Tahaad Pettiford. The Tigers remain in a close race for the final spots inside the Top 10 of the way-too-early rankings.

10. Creighton

Key returns: Trey Alexander*, Steven Ashworth, Ryan Kalkbrenner, Mason Miller
Key additions: Jackson McAndrew, Jamiya Neal, Pop Isaacs
Key departures: Baylor Scheierman

Creighton remains in the Top 10 of the updated way-too-early Top 25 thanks to a pair of backcourt additions. Pop Isaacs and Jamiya Neal promise to keep things moving as the team reloads in the Big East title race.

Ranking 11-25

11. North Carolina
Key returns: RJ Davis, Elliot Cadeau, Seth Trimble
Key additions: Ian Jackson, Drake Powell, Cade Tyson
Key departures: Armando Bacot, Cormac Ryan, Harrison Ingram*

12. Texas
Key returns: Kadin Shedrick, Chendall Weaver
Key additions: Tre Johnson, Tramon Mark, Julian Larry, Jayson Kent, Jordan Pope
Key departures: Max Abmas, Dylan Disu, Tyrese Hunter, Dillon Mitchell

13. Arizona
Key returns: Pelle Larsson*, Caleb Love*, Jaden Bradley*, KJ Lewis*, Motiejus Krivas
Key additions: Joson Sanon, Carter Bryant, Jamari Phillips, Trey Townsend*, Tobe Awaka
Key departures: Keshad Johnson, Oumar Ballo, Kylan Boswell

14. Marquette
Key returns: Kam Jones, David Joplin, Stevie Mitchell, Chase Ross, Sean Jones, Ben Gold
Key additions: N/A
Key departures: Oso Ighodaro, Tyler Kolek

15. Providence
Key returns: Bryce Hopkins, Jayden Pierre
Key additions: Bensley Joseph, Christ Essandoko, Jabri Abdur-Rahim, Wesley Cardet*
Key departures: Devin Carter, Josh Oduro, Ticket Gaines

16. UCLA
Key returns: Lazar Stefanovic, Dylan Andrews, Sebastian Mack
Key additions: Kobe Johnson, Skyy Clark, Eric Dailey, Tyler Bilodeau, William Kyle, Dominick Harris
Key departures: Adem Bona

17. Florida
Key returns: Walter Clayton*, Will Richard*, Alex Condon, Micah Handlogten
Key additions: Sam Alexis, Rueben Chinyelu, Alijah Martin
Key departures: Zyon Pullin, Riley Kugel, Tyrese Samuel

18. Purdue                                                                              
Key returns: Braden Smith, Fletcher Loyer, Trey Kaufman-Renn
Key additions: Kanon Catchings
Key departures: Zach Edey, Lance Jones, Mason Gillis

19. Clemson
Key returns: Chase Hunter*, PJ Hall*, Ian Schieffelin, Chauncey Wiggins, Jake Heidbreder
Key additions: Viktor Lahkin, Jaeden Zackery
Key departures: RJ Godfrey

20. Tennessee
Key returns: Zakai Zeigler, Jordan Gainey
Key additions: Darlinstone Dubar, Felix Okpara, Igor Milicic*
Key departures: Dalton Knecht, Santiago Vescovi, Josiah-Jordan James, Jonas Aidoo, Tobe Awaka

21. Indiana
Key returns: Trey Galloway, Malik Reneau, Mackenzie Mgbako
Key additions: Bryson Tucker, Myles Rice, Oumar Ballo, Kanaan Carlyle, Luke Goode
Key departures: Xavier Johnson, Anthony Walker, Kel’el Ware

22. Texas A&M
Key returns: Wade Taylor, Andersson Garcia, Henry Coleman, Solomon Washington, Jace Carter, Manny Obaseki, Hayden Hefner
Key additions: CJ Wilcher, Pharrel Payne, Zhuric Phelps
Key departures: Tyrece Radford

23. USC
Key returns: N/A
Key additions: Clark Slajchert, Josh Cohen, Bryce Pope, Matt Knowling, Saint Thomas*, Isaiah Elohim, Chibuzo Agbo*, Rashaun Agee, Terrance Williams*, Desmond Claude
Key departures: Boogie Ellis, Isaiah Collier, Kobe Johnson, DJ Rodman, Joshua Morgan, Oziyah Sellers, Vincent Iwuchukwu

24. Ole Miss
Key returns: Matthew Murrell*, Jaemyn Brakefield, Jaylen Murray, TJ Caldwell
Key additions: John Bol, Mikeal Brown-Jones, Malik Dia, Davon Barnes, Dre Davis, Sean Pedulla
Key departures: Allen Flanigan

25. New Mexico
Key returns: Donovan Dent, Nelly Jr. Joseph, JT Toppin, Mustapha Amzil, Tru Washington
Key additions: CJ Noland
Key departures: Jaelen House, Jamal Mashburn