Busting Brackets

NCAA Basketball: Arizona, Indiana, and Ole Miss rise in updated 2024-25 WTE power rankings

Dayton v Arizona
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21. Rutgers Scarlet Knights

In the “covid year” era where freshmen have had as little impact as possible, Rutgers is going to be a big test of how good a team will be relying on young ball-handlers. They have two top-5 overall prospects joining in Ace Bailey and Dylan Harper, part of the current No. 2 overall class.

Just about the entire rotation from this past season had entered the transfer portal, including Gavin Griffiths and Cliff Omoruyi. The one big exception is Jeremiah Williams, who became the team’s best player once he was reinstated to play after being involved in Iowa’s gambling probe. The veteran ball-handler gives them great depth and a go-to option in the backcourt alongside the freshman.

Rutgers landed three transfers to the group, including 20 ppg scoring guard from Eastern Michigan, Tyson Acuff. Jordan Derkack is a 6’5 guard from Merrimack and was the NEC Player of the Year with 17.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg, and 3.9 apg. Zach Martini is a stretch forward from Princeton, who shot 39% from 3-point range this past season.

Look for the Scarlet Knights to add more frontcourt depth and more veterans to balance out the talented and young freshmen class. They have one of the higher ceilings among top-25 teams but also one of the lower floors if the freshmen don’t work out as expected.