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Andy Katz, Correspondent | October 24, 2022

11 impact juniors in men's college basketball, ranked by Andy Katz

11 impact juniors in men's college basketball, ranked by Andy Katz

These are the highest-impact juniors in all of men's college basketball for this upcoming season ranked by Andy Katz. This is not necessarily a best-of list; instead these are the most vital to their teams' success.

1. Mike Miles, TCU: Miles is the Big 12 preseason player of the year. He could have stayed in the NBA Draft. Instead, he’s got a shot to lead TCU to a Big 12 title.

2. Hunter Dickinson, Michigan: Dickinson is the only starter back for the Wolverines. He wasn’t ready to leave Michigan. If he can be a dominant player at both ends of the court then the Wolverines will be back in contention in the Big Ten.

3. Zach Edey, Purdue: Edey no longer has Trevion Williams to alternate inside with for Purdue. This is his frontcourt now. He said he’s up for the challenge of being a dominant force.

4. Julian Strawther, Gonzaga: Strawther declared for the draft but returned to take his turn as the next elite Zag. If he can be a consistent scorer then the Zags have a real shot to get back to a Final Four.

RETURNING PLAYERS: The top 25 returning men's basketball players, ranked by Andy Katz

5. Adama Sanogo, UConn: Sanogo was picked to be the Big East player of the year. He’s a throwback to big men under Jim Calhoun — rim protectors, finishers, and players who can alter the flow of the game. 

6. Jalen Wilson, Kansas: Wilson could have stayed in the draft, but he decided to return and be the go-to player for the Jayhawks. He’s no longer a role player. He’s got to produce.

7. Kris Murray, Iowa: Murray takes over the main offensive role from his twin brother Keegan, who is on the Sacramento Kings. Kris Murray had chances last season and Fran McCaffery does a great job of putting players in a position to succeed when they are ready. Kris Murray’s time is now.

8. Caleb Love, North Carolina: Love came in with plenty of hype and has had his moments in Chapel Hill. Now that he’s played for a title, he’s ready to be even more of a focal point on the perimeter.

IMPACT FROSH: These first-year players will be most important to their teams

9. Cliff Omoruyi, Rutgers: Omoruyi is no longer just an athletic freak. He has refined his game to where he can be relied upon to finish in the half-court. But wow his athleticism can be a game-changer at both ends of the court.

10. Jamal Shead, Houston: Shead will lead the Cougars from the perimeter and be the perfect compliment again to Marcus Sasser. He is the perfect gritty Kelvin Sampson-type player.

11. Yuri Collins, Saint Louis: Collins was one of the best playmakers in the country last season. If he produces at a similar clip then there is no reason why the Billikens can’t compete for an NCAA Tournament berth.

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