Busting Brackets

NCAA Basketball: 10 most important 2024 NBA Draft decisions to watch

Dayton v Arizona
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2. Alex Karaban - UConn Huskies

2023-24 season stats: 13.3 ppg and 5.1 rpg

The 6’8 forward may have been the fifth option at times in the offense but he still managed to have some big outings, with six games of at least 20 points. That includes a pair of 26-point games, with an overall shooting split of 50-38-89. Karaban is the ideal spacing forward who can play in the NBA and already knows how to excel in his role.

UConn already is losing two seniors (Tristen Newton and Cam Spencer) and two projected top-10 NBA Draft picks (Donovan Clingan and Stephon Castle). So if he were to return, Karaban would easily be the focal point of the offense next season, depending on who else the team adds. It would be an opportunity for him to raise his stock even more a year from now.

1. Mark Sears - Alabama Crimson Tide

2023-24 season stats: 21.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 4.0 apg

Several big names in NCAA Basketball have a covid year available to stick around. The biggest name to watch is Sears. A 6’1 guard coming off an All-American season at Alabama, shooting 51% from the field and 44% from deep. Among his many big games, Sears went for 31 points and six rebounds in a win over South Carolina.

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The Crimson Tide has already been busy in the transfer portal and has player decisions to deal with in the frontcourt. But if Sears, who currently has some second-round projections, comes back, that could propel Alabama to be the preseason No. 1 team for the following season.