Super seniors are here to stay for at least the next four seasons until the student-athletes who were on campus in the 2020-21 years cycle through.
That means instead of five seasons to play four, student-athletes now have six to play five. Super seniors were major factors on rosters last season. That won’t change in 2023. Here is my list of the top 25 in this category in the pre-pre-preseason:
1. Kendric Davis, Memphis: The American player of the year has the rare chance to win the award with two different teams at the same conference.
2. Caleb McConnell, Rutgers: The reigning Big Ten defensive player of the year could win the award again and help the Scarlet Knights back to the NCAA tournament.
3. Matthew Mayer, Illinois: Mayer won a title with Baylor and will attempt to help the Illini win a Big Ten championship.
4. Drew Peterson, Southern California: Peterson is a big-shot maker, whose role will only increase this season for Andy Enfield.
5. Marcus Carr, Texas: Carr can be the steady lead guard the Longhorns will need again to put together a transfer-rich roster.
6. Kihei Clark, Virginia: Clark won a title in 2019 and will be the catalyst to get the Cavaliers back to the NCAA tournament in 2023.
7. Kyle Lofton, Florida: The St. Bonaventure transfer will have an immediate impact on Todd Golden’s first team in Gainesville and be one of the top lead guards in the SEC.
8. Hunter Maldonado, Wyoming: Maldonado will be in the chase for Mountain West conference player of the year and the focus for a possible MWC title team.
9. Pete Nance, TBD: Nance was one of the most difficult matchups for any team opposing Northwestern. He can be instant offense for which ever team lands him.
10. Will Richardson, Oregon: Richardson will be one of the best scorers in the Pac-12 for a Ducks team that should be back in the NCAAs.
11. Khalil Shabazz, San Francisco: Shabazz was the catalyst for the Dons’ run to the NCAAs last season and he’ll be the reason they remain relevant under new coach Chris Gerlufsen.
12. KJ Williams, LSU: Williams was a dominant scorer and rebounder for Murray State. He should do the same for his coach Matt McMahon in Baton Rouge.
13. Rasir Bolton, Gonzaga: The Zags desperately needed an experienced lead guard with the departure of Andrew Nembhard. Getting Bolton back was a huge piece of their quest to chase another Final Four.
14. Nate Laszewski, Notre Dame: Laszewski is a money player, making big shots and key plays throughout the course of the game. He’ll help the Irish in their quest to be back in the NCAAs.
15. Souley Boum, Xavier: The UTEP transfer was a near 20-point scorer last season and will help the Musketeers under Sean Miller compete near the top of the Big East.
16. Leaky Black, North Carolina: Black was a glue guy for the Tar Heels’ run to the national title game. He can serve the same role for another quest.
17. David DeJulius, Cincinnati: Wes Miller needed consistency and he will get it with the return of a 14-point scorer for another season.
18. Osun Osunniyi, Iowa State: The Cyclones got a solid post presence who will board and finish in the former St. Bonaventure forward.
19. Eric Hunter Jr., Butler: Thad Matta can count on Hunter Jr., to make the right plays, stay in his lane and be a facilitator after doing the same for Purdue.
20. Connor McCaffery, Iowa: McCaffery is a leader who scraps and wins. He will help the Hawkeyes transition into yet another retooling team that can be in the NCAA tournament.
21. Jaiden Delaire, San Diego: Steve Lavin gets a high basketball IQ player in Delaire who will do a little bit of everything for him as a face-up forward.
MORE RANKINGS: Andy Katz’s top 25 returning players
22. Jacob Grandison, TBD: The former Illinois guard can make timely shots. He can be a spot 3-point shooter off the bench.
23. Nathan Mensah, San Diego State: The Aztecs get back another piece of their puzzle that allowed them to be in the NCAA tournament yet again. Mensah knows his role well.
24. Courtney Ramey, TBD: The former Texas guard is a quality utility player who can fill a need for a team needing experience.
25. KC Ndefo, Seton Hall: The former St. Peter’s forward knows what Shaheen Holloway wants out of him. He’ll deliver the board work, production for him with the Pirates, as well.