Busting Brackets

NCAA Basketball: Ranking of top 25 team backcourts for 2023-24 season

Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports /
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NCAA Basketball
NCAA Basketball Creighton Bluejays guard Ryan Nembhard Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Guards are incredibly important in the sport of NCAA Basketball, especially the older ones thanks to both the transfer portal and the extra year given from the covid era. On paper, there are plenty of teams with quality individual perimeter players.

But who has the best groups of backcourt players entering this season? This piece will look at the top 25 rosters featuring players that operate on the perimeter. This will include those who play the traditional small-forward position on paper, but in actuality, are part of three-guard offenses.

Honorable Mention: Memphis Tigers

Even assuming five-star freshman guard Mikey Williams never joins the team, the Tigers still landed several good guards from the portal. Jahvon Quinerly is a former SEC 6th Man of the Year at Alabama, while Caleb Mills is a four-year career double-digit scorer. And Jaykwon Walton is one of the best shooters in NCAA Basketball, making 40% of his three-point attempts at Wichita State.

HM: Gonzaga Bulldogs

The depth may be tested but Gonzaga does have a good starting duo to work with in Nolan Hickman and Creighton transfer, Ryan Nembhard. They’ll need freshmen guards Dusty Stromer and Luka Krajnovic to have an impact off the bench in order to rely rely on the starters for 35+ mpg.

HM: Florida Gators

The big name to watch here is Riley Kugel, who is a consensus NCAA Basketball breakout candidate this season after a strong freshman campaign. The Gators are also going to rely on a mid-major transfer backcourt of Zyon Pullin and Walter Clayton Jr., who were stars at UC-Riverside and Iona, respectively.

HM: St. John’s Red Storm

New HC Rick Pitino added a ton of names on the roster, including on the perimeter. Jordan Dingle averaged over 23 ppg at Penn last year, while Daniss Jenkins was one of the top players in the MAAC at Iona with Pitino. Other transfers such as Naheim Alleyne, RJ Luis, and Sean Conway should have an impact there as well.

HM: Purdue Boilermakers

Guards Fletcher Loyer and Braden Smith had successful freshmen campaigns, starting for a team that got a 1 seed last season. Look for them to be breakout candidates and if they can be more consistent, could be part of the best team in the country. They do lack depth so they’ll need Southern Illinois transfer Lance Jones to have an impact.