USA Today via Reuters

USA Today via Reuters

Despite attracting the lowest attendance and viewership numbers during the NCAA Finals last season, the 2023-24 season looks to be a promising one as new sets of rules and an influx of talent looks to revive viewer’s interest in the men’s game. With the Huskies’ 5th title win over the Aztecs seeing a 15% drop in viewership, the new season will be hoping to attract newer viewers as the men’s game goes toe to toe with the women’s division this time around.

Although the women’s division has big names like Angel Reese, Caitlin Clark and Cameron Brink to choose from, the men’s division on the other hand has fans spoilt for choices even though stars like Brandon Miller and Jamie Jacquez Jr. have already left for the NBA during the offseason. The introduction of Bronny James will be another key factor in bringing viewers to the competition. But James Jr. isn’t the only one who’s going to make the 2023-24 NCAA season captive.

Top 5 ballers to look out for during the 2023-24 NCAA season


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via Imago

1. Adem Bona – UCLA Bruins

Although the most successful franchise in the history of the competition, the UCLA Bruins have had a trophy drought for the past 28 years. They look to build all over again this term as 4 starters including Jamie Jacquez Jr. joined the NBA during the offseason. Adem Bona is the only player remaining from last year’s Pac-12 topping team this season. He looks to lead the UCLA to a new dawn based on his last season’s successes as the Pac-12 conference Rookie of the Year.

The Nigerian-Turkish international is also the only player on the list with prior professional experience as Bona suited up for Turkish side Pınar Karşıyaka between 2019-2022. With the eccentric forward averaging 7.7 points and 5.3 rebounds during his rookie season, many are expecting the 6’10 star to reach new heights this season before UCLA’s eventual move to the Big 10 conference next year.

2. Kyle Filipowski – Duke 

The Duke Blue Devils have been the most successful team this century as they became a NCAA tournament regular under the stewardship of the legendary Coach K. While Krzyzewski stepped down from his coaching role in 2022, his former assistant John Scheyer has been quick to take the reins from his predecessor as he led the Blue Devils to the NCAA tournament as the 5th seeded team last term.

One of the biggest revelations under Scheyer was that of Kyle Filipowski who was awarded the ACC Rookie of the year and the ACC tournament MVP for his exploits and looks to build on his excellent rookie season where he averaged 15.1 points and 8.9 rebounds. The five-star rated high school recruit who stands at 7 feet will be looking to leave a bigger impact this term as he looks to continue his partnership with teammate Jeremey Roach.

3. Armando Bacot – North Carolina

Finishing the 2022-23 season with a 20-13 record, the North Carolina Tar Heels had an abysmal outing last year as they finished 7th in the ACC conference. Failing to qualify for the NCAA tournament, Michael Jordan’s alma mater even turned down the NIT invitation last season as star man Armando Bacot was the only shining light in an otherwise underwhelming year.

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The Virginia native made it to the First team All-ACC for a second year in a row and finished the season averaging 15.9 points and 10.4 rebounds per game making him one of the few stars to achieve that stat line last season. With the Tar Heels and Bacot reaching the NCAA Finals under the stewardship of Hubert Davis just a year ago, the expectations in North Carolina will be riding high this term as they look to avenge last season’s abysmal record.

4. Boogie Ellis – USC

With USC strengthening their squad with the additions of Bronny James and the highest-ranked recruit in program history in Isaiah Collier, no man is happier in California than San Diego native Boogie Ellis. The Trojans senior just had his best season till date last year and will be vying for the title this term as he is joined by two of the biggest high school talents in the country.

The former Memphis guard will be looking to better his output of 17.7 points, 3.1 assists and 3.4 rebounds from last season as USC looks to top the Pac-12 conference and win their first ever NCAA crown this season.

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While doubts loom over Bronny’s complete comeback this season, Ellis will surely be the leading man once again as the 2021 NIT champions start their NCAA journey next month.

5. Zach Edey – Purdue

The tallest player in Big Ten Conference history Zach Edey is surely the number one baller to look out for during the 2023-24 season as last year’s National College Player of the Year returns for his final year with the Purdue Boilermakers.


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After a scintillating season where he averaged 22.3 points and 12.9 rebounds, the Canadian was also a part of the FIBA World Cup squad and earned himself a bronze medal as Canada shocked Team USA during the tournament in South Asia.

While he was unable to take Purdue all the way last term, the 7’4 center will be looking to build on last season’s successes as he was awarded a host of individual prizes including the Pete Newell Big Man Award, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award and the Big Ten tournament MVP. Although his efforts were enough to place Purdue at the top of the Big Ten conference, the center will be looking to take his team all the way this year as he approaches his final collegiate season.


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With many youngsters looking to enter the league this term, many of the players on the list will be off to the big leagues come next season. Who do you fancy the most from the aforementioned names and did we leave any big names out? Let us know in the comments below.