Busting Brackets

NCAA Basketball: Alabama, Kentucky rises in latest way-too-early top-25 power rankings for 2024-25

Alabama v Connecticut
Alabama v Connecticut / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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8. UConn Huskies

Coming off winning two straight national titles, there’s a lot to like about where the program is at, even after losing four starters. Donovan Clingan and Stephon Castle are projected NBA Draft lottery picks, while Tristen Newton and Cam Spencer were one of the best backcourt duos in the sport. Still, the team brings back a few rotation pieces that’ll get larger roles, including possible All-American forward candidate, Alex Karaban.

UConn was also able to bring in some high-profile newcomers, including forward Saint Mary’s guard Aidan Mahaney and Michigan center, Tarris Reed. 5-star freshman wing Liam McNeeley was a former commit at Indiana who could be be the next young star for the Huskies. As long as Coach Dan Hurley is still around, UConn will be a contender to deal with, even with a new cast of players.

7. Baylor Bears

Four starters are gone from the Bears, leaving just Jayden Nunn. Guards Rayj Dennis and Ja’Kobe Walter will be tough to replace but Coach Scott Drew, who turned down the Kentucky job this offseason, landed two of the top transfers from the portal to maintain a top-10 caliber roster.

Former Duke guard Jeremy Roach is one of the top senior guards in NCAA Basketball, while Norchad Omier gives Baylor a prolific rebounding big man inside. Nunn and Langston Love will have an even larger role in the offense next season, while VJ Edgecombe could be the latest five-star freshman to end up being a “one and done” player for the program.