Creme's Updated Way too Early top 25 for 2023-24

Ignatius L Hoops

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Here are the B1G teams:

3. Iowa Hawkeyes

With Clark running the show again, every Hawkeyes game next season will be an event. The attention she garners might reach levels never seen before. Clark alone puts Iowa in the national picture, but having glue players like Gabbie Marshall and Kate Martin back for their fifth years is an enormous help to the Hawkeyes' title chances. Monika Czinano and McKenna Warnock will be missed, but if 6-2 Hannah Stuelke and 6-5 Addison O'Grady continue to develop, Clark will have enough help for a return trip to the Final Four. Previous rank: 4

6. Ohio State Buckeyes​

Adding ACC Defensive Player in the Year in Duke transfer Celeste Taylor makes an already dominant press even better. Taylor Mikesell's shooting will still be missed, but with Jacy Sheldon back for a fifth year to run the show and Cotie McMahon, the Big Ten Freshman of the Year, on the verge of being one of the game's next stars, the Buckeyes could be even better. Taylor Thierry and Rikki Harris should also continue to thrive in Ohio State's up-tempo attack. The Buckeyes will battle Iowa and Indiana for Big Ten supremacy and are a Final Four contender. Previous rank: 8

7. Indiana Hoosiers
The loss of Grace Berger can't be understated. She was so important to the program and made so many big plays. But coach Teri Moren has built one of the best teams in the Big Ten, especially with Mackenzie Holmes to build around in 2023-24. Holmes will be on every first-team All-American preseason ballot. The 6-3 post will be surrounded by veteran shooters Sara Scalia, Chloe Moore-McNeil and Sydney Parrish. Yarden Garzon was Indiana's best 3-point shooter as a freshman and made clutch shots all season. If she makes a big leap as a sophomore, the Hoosiers will have another bona fide go-to offensive player. Previous rank: 5

No. 17 Maryland Terrapins

No coach has restocked better over the past few years than Brenda Frese. This offseason has already brought in NC State transfer Jakia Brown-Turner. The 6-0 Brown-Turner gives the Terps a wing scorer to help offset the loss of Diamond Miller. This is now Shyanne Sellers' team, however, and she will be the No. 1 option. The return of Faith Masonius, Lavender Briggs and Brinae Alexander as graduate students gives Frese a more substantial foundation than she had at this time last year. Riley Nelson, a 6-0 guard and local product, heads a solid recruiting class, and the Terps still have three scholarships available. Expect more additions from the transfer portal. Previous rank: 12

No. 25 Nebraska Cornhuskers


Missing the NCAA tournament this season was a disappointment after a late-season collapse, but it shouldn't happen again next season in Lincoln. Top three scorers Jaz Shelley, Isabelle Bourne and Alexis Markowski are back to help the Cornhuskers break through in a top-heavy Big Ten. Shelley was first-team all-conference and Markowski led the Big Ten in rebounding (9.8 RPG). Getting guard Darian White, one of the best players in Big Sky Conference history, from Montana State should be a big boost to an offense that lacked consistency. White also twice was the Big Sky's Defensive Player of the Year. Previous rank: NR
 


Here are the B1G teams:

And these strong Big Ten teams starting the season after next:

i

4. UCLA Bruins​

A year ago the Bruins welcomed the nation's top recruiting class, and many of those freshmen thrived as UCLA reached the Sweet 16. Coach Cori Close also added the No. 1 player in last year's recruiting cycle when 6-7 Lauren Betts decided to leave Stanford for Westwood. Throw in Charisma Osborne's decision to forgo the WNBA for one more season, and UCLA might have its best team ever. Kiki Rice lived up to her billing as a freshman and was the team's second-leading scorer behind Osborne. Rice's classmates Londynn Jones and Gabriela Jaquez should also get better as sophomores. Emily Bessoir has all-conference potential, and Betts could be a dominant force with more consistent minutes and a season of college basketball experience. Previous rank: 6


No. 18 USC Trojans

The program's continued climb under Lindsay Gottlieb hit another level when she landed the country's top recruit, 6-0 guard Juju Watkins from Sierra Canyon High School in Los Angeles. With her skill set and approach to the game, scouts have tabbed Watkins a surefire future pro. She'll team up with 6-4 sophomore Rayah Marshall, one of the country's best defenders, to form the backbone of USC's immediate future. Gottlieb, who played at Brown, also went back to her Ivy League roots and grabbed grad transfers Kayla Padilla from Penn and McKenzie Forbes from Harvard. Padilla was the Ivy's second-leading scorer at 17.5 PPG and Forbes played for Gottlieb in her freshman season at Cal. They should help replace three of the Trojans' top four scorers, including Kadi Sissoko (15.4 PPG) and Destiny Littleton (14.0 PPG). Previous rank: 21
 

Is Creme right about Bourne coming back for a 5th year?

No. 25 Nebraska Cornhuskers


Missing the NCAA tournament this season was a disappointment after a late-season collapse, but it shouldn't happen again next season in Lincoln. Top three scorers Jaz Shelley, Isabelle Bourne and Alexis Markowski are back to help the Cornhuskers break through in a top-heavy Big Ten.

She had previously declared she wouldn't return.

 

Is Creme right about Bourne coming back for a 5th year?

No. 25 Nebraska Cornhuskers


Missing the NCAA tournament this season was a disappointment after a late-season collapse, but it shouldn't happen again next season in Lincoln. Top three scorers Jaz Shelley, Isabelle Bourne and Alexis Markowski are back to help the Cornhuskers break through in a top-heavy Big Ten.

She had previously declared she wouldn't return.

No
 



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The Nebraska Website, "A three-time honorable-mention All-Big Ten selection and three-time team captain, Isabelle Bourne closed out an impressive four-year Nebraska career by averaging 12.6 points and 6.7 rebounds as a senior. She chose to forego a potential fifth season of eligibility to return to Australia and pursue a professional career in the WNBL."



Players only make $16,000 in the WNBL. Maybe she was tired of college ball. Could be other opportunities to that. Maybe a future coach?

EDIT: If that's Australian dollar, that's only $11,000 in US dollars.

 
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The Nebraska Website, "A three-time honorable-mention All-Big Ten selection and three-time team captain, Isabelle Bourne closed out an impressive four-year Nebraska career by averaging 12.6 points and 6.7 rebounds as a senior. She chose to forego a potential fifth season of eligibility to return to Australia and pursue a professional career in the WNBL."



Players only make $16,000 in the WNBL. Maybe she was tired of college ball. Could be other opportunities to that. Maybe a future coach?

EDIT: If that's Australian dollar, that's only $11,000 in US dollars.

Players make more than that in the WNBL, except for the DP’s (Developmental Players). The more well-known you are, the more you are paid. The star players on each team do very well. (My daughter played there this past winter).
 




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