• Stay or go? These 24 college teams have the most to gain or lose before the NBA draft's withdrawal deadline at the end of May.
By Emily Caron
April 22, 2019

With Cassius Winston returning for Michigan State, the Spartans have their star player (and top spot in SI’s way-too-early 2019–20 rankings) locked in. But with the new NBA draft rules allowing greater freedom for underclassmen to get a feel for their professional prospects—even hire an agent to help them do so­—while still leaving the door open to return to school, other schools haven’t been as lucky. A number of last season’s stars are gone for good, but the second group of NBA draft declarers could swing either way. The players who could potentially come back have until midnight on May 29, 10 days after the league’s annual combine ends, to decide whether to withdraw from the draft pool.

Among the possible returners group, several player’s decisions could have outsized impacts on their respective teams’ potential for the 2019–20 season and could alter conference competition dramatically. Some decisions could even change the national landscape, which makes them worthy of conversation and consideration. We took a look at the situations of 42 players on the fence and the 24 teams awaiting their final call.

Kentucky (EJ Montgomery, Nick Richards)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 2

Kentucky will lose PJ Washington, Keldon Johnson and Tyler Herro to the draft and will graduate Reid Travis, but with EJ Montgomery and Nick Richards now testing the waters as well, the Wildcats could be coping with more losses than expected next year. While neither played starters minutes last season, both provided necessary relief off the bench. If they do turn pro, Kentucky’s entire frontcourt will have departed. Incoming 6’9” center Nate Sestina, a graduate transfer from Bucknell, could help fill an immediate hole, but none of Calipari’s incoming recruits have the same size that Montgomery and Richards provided in the paint.

With Herro and Johnson off to the NBA and Quade Green having transferred out midseason, Kentucky’s backcourt will fall in the hands of Ashton Hagans, Immanuel Quickley and incoming combo guard Tyrese Maxey, who should be able to make immediate contributions on offense. The floor will be run just fine next year, but Montomgery and Richards’s entry into the draft leaves questions about this team’s potential. Their departure would mean significant minutes early on for incoming small forwards Khalil Whitney and Keion Brooks and a substantial dip in frontcourt depth for the Wildcats. Returning would give them a shot at serious improvements to their draft stock and would lessen concern about this Kentucky team.

Virginia (Mamadi Diakite)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 3

The reigning national champs have almost assuredly lost De’Andre Hunter (projected lottery pick) and Ty Jerome to the draft, and Kyle Guy announced Monday that he will keep his name in as well. That leaves Virginia's last draft domino as forward Mamadi Diakite, who emerged as a serious frontcourt threat for the Cavaliers during March Madness and will be needed at the post in the wake of Jack Salt’s graduation. Without a true center on the team, Jay Huff, Braxton Key and Diakite will all be asked to do more in the middle. Incoming freshman Casey Morsell could see minutes early in the backcourt alongside Kihei Clark, especially with Guy gone, but learning Tony Bennett’s system takes time, so Virginia could enter some murky waters regardless of Diakite's decision. With how good Tony Bennett is at getting the most out of his players, losing a trio of scorers could still be manageable, but a fourth departure would be tough.

Michigan (Ignas Brazdeikis, Jordan Poole)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 4

Michigan will lose Charles Matthews to the NBA, and Jordan Poole and Ignas Brazdeikis could potentially be out the door as well. If the Wolverines lose all of those prospects to the pros, they’ll be saying goodbye to their top three scorers. Getting either of the latter two back would be huge in helping to keep this offense going. At a minimum, Michigan will bring back senior guard Zavier Simpson, Jon Teske and Isaiah Livers (who will be a breakout candidate in a starting role).

Simpson could help keep the well-oiled Michigan machine rolling as a leader and facilitator but he won’t help make up for the points that left for the league. He’s a well-rounded player—8.8 points, 6.6 assists, 5.0 boards during his junior campaign while averaging 33.9 minutes—and the leader this team will need as John Beilein figures things out, but the point guard would be losing two of his top options on offense. Eli Brooks is next in line to join Simpson in the back, but he’s another player who doesn’t have the explosiveness or prowess it takes to lead an efficient offense. Poole’s return would certainly give both time to come into their own. Top recruit Jalen Wilson, a 6’8” small forward, could help with some scoring on the wing, but having Brazdeikis back would certainly reduce any early expectations for Wilson in the lane. The loss of one or the other would be a pill Beilein could easily swallow, but Michigan’s potential next year without either plummets.

Gonzaga (Zach Norvell, Killian Tillie)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 8

With the graduation of Josh Perkins and Geno Crandall, Gonzaga is going to need Zach Norvell to return to help lead the backcourt and to contribute some serious points from the perimeter as the Bulldogs shift things around without their leading scorers from last season, Rui Hachimura and Brandon Clarke, who are on their way to the NBA. Killian Tillie could help bridge some of that gap left up front should he return to try and put together a healthy season. Tillie averaged just 6.2 points through his 15 appearances and would look to get back to his sophomore year form this season. Coming back would mean both a chance to boost his draft stock and to solidify a pretty stellar frontcourt alongside Filip Petrusev and Corey Kispert.

Losing Norvell, however, would be a bigger hit given that the Zags don’t have nearly as much depth in the backcourt as they do in the front. The program’s six incoming recruits are led by four four-star recruits including top-prospects Drew Timme, a center, and forward Anton Watson, who could become immediate contributors in the paint. With only one guard committed to the class, they need Norvell much more than they do Tillie.

Ohio State (Kaleb Wesson)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 9

The Buckeyes graduate their starting backcourt of C.J. Jackson and Keyshawn Woods and saw center Kaleb Wesson declare, which leaves them without three of their top four scorers if Wesson sticks with his decision to turn pro. Wesson has the potential to solidify his standing as one of the best players in the conference with another standout season, and Ohio State would really benefit from having him back as an anchor for its offense. The 6’9’ forward led the team in points, blocks and boards last season and is the presence the Buckeyes need on both ends of the floor to contend in the Big Ten. They have a host of young players ready to step up and a trio of incoming four-star freshmen—point guard DJ Carton (the fourth-ranked point guard in the class) and forwards Alonzo Gaffney and EJ Liddell—should all help in some capacity, but nothing would beat bringing back Wesson in terms of immediate impact.

Oregon (Kenny Wooten, Payton Pritchard)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 10

Four of Oregon’s players have declared for the 2019 NBA draft: star center and projected first-round pick Bol Bol, who was sidelined early in the season with a foot injury, 6’9” standout freshman forward Louis King, who is almost definitely departing, two-way player and paint presence Kenny Wooten and starting point guard Payton Pritchard. While the former two won’t be returning, the latter two leaving would be a big hit. Both Wooten and Pritchard were significant contributors for the late-blooming Ducks last season. If Wooten were to leave along with Bol and King (and considering Paul White’s graduation and Abu Kigab’s transfer), Oregon wouldn’t return a single member of its frontcourt rotation. Francis Okoro and Miles Norris would be asked to shoulder a heavy load during their sophomore seasons without Wooten on the floor with them, as the three bigs committed to their incoming class figure things out.

Pritchard would be the more damaging loss, however, as the orchestrator of Oregon’s offense and arguably the team’s best on-ball defender. He led the Ducks on both ends of the floor and while Victor Bailey Jr. and Will Richardson certainly showed promise toward the end of last season, neither look ready right now to take this team anywhere beyond the Pac-12. Top shooting guard Chris Duarte could come in ready to contribute, but Oregon will still be without a facilitator even close to Pritchard’s caliber should he turn pro.

Maryland (Anthony Cowan)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 11

Bruno Fernando’s physical abilities helped Maryland through a host of inconsistencies last season, and he could build on a banner year should he return. Unfortunately for the Terps, their best big man made it official on the first day of May that he was staying in the draft. To twist the knife in the Terps' wound, guard Anthony Cowan declared for early entry, too. Fernando and Cowan combined to lead the Terps in all significant statistical categories—the former in rebounds and blocks, and the latter in points, assists and steals, proving his importance as the team’s facilitator. While Cowan seems likely to return, the loss of both would make for another very young—albeit talented—Maryland team that might need some time to settle in without its stars.

With Jalen Smith coming back, the rest of the Terps’ core will return. Darryl Morsell, Eric Ayala and Aaron Wiggins will all have to step up to fill the space on the floor, but Maryland has what it needs to survive in Fernando’s absence up front, especially with incoming four-star center Makahi Mitchell, his twin brother Makhel Mitchell, a three-star big man, and small forward Donta Scott arriving soon. The loss of Cowan would cost them in the backcourt, but the Terps should be just fine up front in the wake of Fernando’s departure.

Kansas (Devon Dotson, Quentin Grimes, Silvio De Sousa)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 12

Here’s the thing: the De Sousa situation is entirely out of Kansas’s control at this point. If his two-year suspension is successfully appealed, he says he'll stay. If it’s denied, he’s gone to the draft. If he is back…he could help fill some of the frontcourt holes left in the wake of Dedric Lawson’s departure. But even with the losses of Lawson to the NBA, his brother, K.J. to the transfer portal and Lagerald Vick to graduation, Kansas still gets a decent amount back even if Devon Dotson and Quinten Grimes go too (and it seems unlikely it will lose both).

A healthy Udoka Azubuike will return to center the Jayhawks up front and Ochai Agbaji and Marcus Garrett can lock down the backcourt, which makes neither Grimes nor Dotson make-or-break for the upcoming season. Both could do some serious building on 2018–19 if they stay, improving on a season of uneven showings with a second year. But if Doston and Grimes do depart, Kansas still has a pair of solid starters in Agbaji and Garrett, both of whom could really breakout in their absence. Incoming four-star combo guard Isaac McBride could also see some early minutes as relief for the team’s facilitators if that’s the case. The Jayhawks won’t exactly boast a ton of depth if they do lose the duo and they may need a grad transfer or two to fill out the rotation, but they should improve from last season either way.

Seton Hall (Myles Powell)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 15

Seton Hall flew under-the-radar last season but if it brings Powell back, the Pirates could be poised for a true breakout year in a better Big East. If Powell doesn’t return, it’s a dramatically different story. Two-three star recruits and Seton Hall’s returners just cannot compensate for his 23.1 points per game on their own, even if the rest of the team’s key pieces produce more than they did last year. If he comes back, the Pirates look like a potential top-25 team. Powell has improved year over year on his way to becoming one of college basketball’s best scorers. His percentages from the field have shot up 5% over three seasons while his production has more than doubled as Powell has improved both his playmaking ability and his shot selection. This is one player the Pirates cannot afford to lose; most other teams on this list could manage without their potential losses, but the same can’t be said for Seton Hall.

Louisville (Jordan Nwora, V.J. King, Steven Enoch)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 16

Chris Mack has a top-10 recruiting class on the way, led by McDonald’s All-American Samuell Williamson, a 6’6” small forward, and big man Aidan Igiehon. Five of his six commits are four-star recruits, a group of which could fill out a starting rotation if Louisville wanted (not that it will or should, but hypothetically it could). So even though the loss of Jordan Nwora—who led the Cardinals in scoring, rebounds and steals—to the NBA would pose a challenge for Mack when it comes to getting points, especially considering that the team’s second-best scorer Christen Cunningham will have graduated, this year’s team will still have a ton of potential without him.

Without Cunningham in the back, things will look a bit different as former St. Joseph's point guard Lamarr Kimble joins the team as a graduate transfer and Ryan McMahon likely locks down the starting two slot, unless one of Louisville’s recruits takes his place. Forward Dwayne Sutton, who saw big improvements last season (4.3 points to 10.0), will have to make key strides again to make up for some of the scoring, especially if V.J. King goes too. King’s offensive output dipped from 8.6 points to 3.9 per game between his sophomore and junior seasons but he could come into his own outside of Nwora’s shadow if he chooses to return. A 6’11” Malik Williams is well set up to slot in for Steven Enoch, a second somewhat surprising Louisville draft declarer, if he too leaves the program for the pros. Nwora’s return would rightfully ignite much more optimism for the upcoming season, as he was the Cardinals' primary offensive option last year, but this young Louisville team will trend in the right direction next season either way.

Florida (Andrew Nembhard)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 18

Florida should have quite a bit to look forward to next season with the arrival of a pair of five-star recruits in Scottie Lewis and Tre Mann, both of whom will be immediate contributors. If Nembhard leaves, that puts some extra pressure on Mann at point, but Noah Locke will be there for a second season to hold up the backcourt. Nembhard coming back could really help the Gators contend in the SEC this season, especially with several unknowns up front again. Incoming freshman Omar Payne will hopefully fill the void left by Kevarrius Hayes, and Keyontae Johnson will be asked for a big lift as the unproven Isaiah Stokes and Dontay Bassett get used to their minutes. Nembhard’s return could help Florida find the consistency it struggled to attain last season.

Utah State (Neemias Queta)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 20

If shot-blocker Neemias Queta sticks around, the Aggies will bring back nearly every key contributor from a team that was sneakily good. There’s just one small snag: with the graduation of forwards Quinn Taylor and Dwayne Brown Jr., Utah State’s frontcourt will need some serious help if Queta doesn’t come back. Justin Bean and Ben Fakira would have to step up big time, especially since Craig Smith’s four commits don't seem likely for major contributions off the bat. All four are listed at 6’7” or taller, with one shooting guard—JUCO player Alphonso Anderson—sitting among a trio of forwards. They’ve got the length to cover the floor, but they’ll need time to learn the ropes, which could mean some struggles under the basket without Queta. If he returns, he’ll be a big help in speeding that process along for the bigs.

Utah State’s backcourt looks like it’ll be just as dangerous as last year with the return of Sam Merrill for his senior season. Merrill was one of the best players in the conference and will return the Aggies their top scorer (20.9 points, 4.2 assists) alongside Diogo Brito and Brock Miller (8.2 and 8.1 points per game, respectively), which puts Utah State in a position to build on last year’s success, especially if Queta comes back.

Tennessee (Grant Williams, Jordan Bone)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 23

Tennessee’s success last season largely hinged on the duo of two-time SEC Player of the Year Grant Williams and honorable mention All-American Admiral Schofield. With the graduation of Schofield on the wing and Kyle Alexander up front, the Vols’ upcoming season hinges on whether Williams and Jordan Bone return to school—and if just one does, whether or not he can lead this team through a bit of rebuilding.

The loss of Williams would be a huge blow to Tennessee, and without Bone, Rick Barnes would have to re-build his backcourt. Lamonte Turner and Jordan Bowden will both be back for their senior seasons, but given how often Barnes likes to play four guards on the floor, the Vols need more than those two for another successful season in the SEC. Bone isn’t a surefire first-round pick, and if he comes back, he’d lead this team alongside incoming five-star guard Josiah James, who could slot in at either of the guard spots. Williams isn’t a lock for the first round either. Even with John Fulkerson and Yves Pons poised to get more minutes in the paint, it’d be a lot of new faces up front without Williams and Alexander. Without Bone, there'd be change in the backcourt, too. Tennessee would also have to find a way to replace the production of its top three scorers if both underclassmen depart, so Barnes will have to find new ways to get points out of his players that remain, especially considering the other two recruits in his incoming class probably won’t arrive in Knoxville ready to make immediate contributions on the court.

Auburn (Jared Harper, Chuma Okeke)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: 25

Auburn built off of a surprisingly good 2017–18 season with a trip to the program's first Final Four. The cost of that success was the boost it offered to the draft stock of several starters. Now the Tigers could lose both members of their starting backcourt and their best forward, a trio that doubles as the team’s top three scorers. With Bryce Brown and Malik Dunbar out of eligibility, senior guard Samir Doughty would be the most experienced member of the backcourt by a wide margin if Jared Harper leaves. If Okeke stays in the draft—he was on the first-round bubble but tore his ACL in the Sweet 16—Auburn would also have to cope with the loss of its best paint presence.

The Tigers have five commits in their incoming class but only one pure backcourt player: four-star combo guard Tyrell Jones. If Harper doesn’t come back, Doughty and rising senior J'Von McCormick would have a heavy load to carry, and immediate pressure would be put on Jones to contribute. With two perimeter players and a pair of big men filling out the newcomers, Auburn’s frontcourt won't lack for depth, but it will be young. Okeke’s return would help its development, but his loss won’t entirely hinder it. If Harper or a healthy Okeke comes back, the Tigers should be O.K.—that way at least one position group will be anchored by a talented veteran returner—but the loss of both would be a huge blow to a program breaking through. Harper has hinted that even if he's heading towards going undrafted, he may not return to the Plains, leaving Okeke as the more likely returnee.

Xavier (Naji Marshall, Paul Scruggs, Quentin Goodin and Tyrique Jones)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: On the cusp

As the Big East gets tougher, the early exits of four starters would be a big blow for the Musketeers, who were already losing their fifth starter (Zach Hankins) and their sixth and seventh men Kyle Castlin and Ryan Welage to graduation. Naji Marshall, the team’s leading scorer, and Tyrique Jones formed the base of Xavier’s frontcourt alongside Hankins, while Scruggs and Goodin held down the guard slots. Each underclassman would play a huge role in the Musketeers’ 2019–20 success were he to return.

With two four-star guards in an incoming class of five slotting in as backcourt boosters and the arrival via transfer of Ohio’s leading scorer in forward Jason Carter, the Musketeers could still have a talented team regardless of which players come back, but the return of Marshall, Scruggs, Goodin and Jones would really take this team to the next level. Travis Steele, entering his second season replacing Chris Mack at Xavier, can’t afford to lose all of his veterans if he wants to improve on last year’s disappointing campaign. Losses to the draft could also put early pressure on the 2019 commits, who don’t look ready to step into starting roles just yet.

LSU (Tremont Waters, Skylar Mays, Javonte Smart, Naz Reid)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

The Tigers graduated big man Kavell Bigby-Williams, so if all of Tremont Waters, Skylar Mays, Javonte Smart and Naz Reid really have said their final goodbyes to Baton Rouge, that would mean the loss of LSU’s entire starting five. Waters and Reid are the most likely to leave as a pair of potential second-round picks, which takes away half of the Tigers’ backcourt and their best center, but if Mays and Smart are gone too, LSU will be green at every spot on the floor.

A 6'7" duo of Darius Days and Emmitt Williams (who declared for the draft but is expected back in Baton Rouge) won’t form quite the imposing paint presence that Reid did, but they’ve both played enough minutes that they should be able to step up in his absence, as should Marlon Taylor as the new floor general in the back. If Smart, Mays and Waters all turn pro, Taylor will have to rely on the help of Marshall Graves or Will Reese, who are just about as untested as LSU’s two incoming recruits, a pair of three-star guards. Granted, all four players remaining in the draft seems unlikely. LSU should return at least a pair of last year’s starters, but without Waters or Reid, or even with half of that potent scoring combo, the offense will need a new spark.

Syracuse (Oshae Brissett)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

With star guard Tyus Battle almost a sure lock to leave and Frank Howard officially out of an Orange uniform, last year’s streaky Syracuse team is now in the hands of forwards Elijah Hughes and Oshae Brissett—if he returns. Brissett was Syracuse’s best rebounder but saw his scoring production decline during his sophomore season. Another year at ‘Cuse could help his draft stock if he can get back to his freshman form and would be a huge help as Jim Boeheim works to get more out of his frontcourt with his son Buddy leading the returners at guard. The Orange have three incoming big men—two centers and one wing—along with two guards. Brissett’s presence would be hugely beneficial from a leadership and experience perspective as Syracuse begins to rebuild without Battle.

Florida State (Mfiondu Kabengele)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

The Seminoles’ success grew out of a deep well of veteran leadership and athleticism that helped them hang with the ACC’s big dogs all season, but after graduating six rotation players, it doesn’t look like that’ll be the case next fall, especially if they lose Mfiondu Kabengele to the draft. If the ACC's Sixth Man of the Year does not return, FSU coach Leonard Hamilton will lose seven of his eight top scorers. Kabengele’s points would also help Florida State survive while M.J. Walker and Devin Vassell figure things out in the back. If he does go to the draft, the Seminoles are going to need 6’8” sophomore Raiquan Gray to take a serious step forward this offseason.

Incoming four-star small forward Patrick Williams and four-star center Balsa Koprivica, the headliners of Hamilton’s strong six-man recruiting class, could help compensate for what was lost up front if Kabengele does depart. Regardless of his decision, this team won’t look anything like the Florida State squad that fans watched make a run all the way to the Sweet 16 last season.

Mississippi State (Reggie Perry)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

One half of Mississippi State’s starting frontcourt has graduated (Aric Holman) and the other half could be departing for the draft in Reggie Perry, the program’s best rim protector and rebounder. A 6'11" Abdul Ado or incoming four-star forward Elias King could slot into the lineup in his place, but neither would make as much of an impact in the paint as Perry did alongside Mississippi State’s four-guard lineup from last season.

Quinndary Weatherspoon is out of eligibility and Lamar Peters is staying in the draft, leaving the backcourt in the hands of Tyson Carter and Quinndary’s younger brother Nick Weatherspoon, whom coach Ben Howland expects to be the starting point guard next season. Perry is the only real question mark that remains, and his return would be the piece that the Bulldogs need to take a big step forward in what has otherwise been a slow-and-steady progression under head coach Ben Howland and join the SEC’s first group of challengers.

Providence (Alpha Diallo)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

Providence could surprise an up-for-grabs Big East if Alpha Diallo stays in school. Diallo led the Friars in four categories—points, rebounds, assists and steals—during a breakout sophomore campaign, and his return would raise the ceiling of a team that returns most of its key players outside of Isaiah Jackson. If Diallo were to leave, A.J. Reeves and David Duke, who should make a big jump this season, would still make a dangerous backcourt in light of his departure. UMass transfer Luwane Pipkins will also help run point, but Diallo would have the keys to the offense in 2019–20, with center Nate Watson anchoring the frontcourt.

SMU (Jimmy Whitt Jr.)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

SMU will return all of its young frontcourt, but with the graduation of guards Jahmal McMurray, Nat Dixon and Jarrey Foster, the departure of Jimmy Whitt Jr. would leave an entirely new backcourt to call the shots for the Mustangs. Cal transfer Darius McNeill could make up for some of what Whitt brought, and the incoming recruiting class consists of four guards who could all see minutes early depending on how quickly they adapt, but SMU will need Whitt’s versatility on the floor as they phase younger players into the starting rotation. As a pesky presence on the court and the Mustang’s best facilitator, Whitt would be a big loss for a team trying to make up ground on the AAC’s top dogs. Without Whitt, SMU is almost assuredly in for another season in the bottom half of the conference.

Ole Miss (Breein Tyree, Devontae Shuler)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

Ole Miss is another middle-of-the-pack SEC team from this year who could make a big leap if rising senior Breein Tyree and rising junior Devontae Shuler return. The Rebels’ No. 2 scorer Terence Davis is gone to graduation, as is Bruce Stevens, but they would return many of the key cogs that made them one of the SEC's surprise tournament teams. Retaining Tyree and Shuler would set a high bar for the backcourt with forward Blake Hinson, a rising sophomore, set up for a potential breakout season. Ole Miss is bringing in a decent amount of talent to keep things moving forward in Kermit Davis's second year, including four-star shooting guard Austin Crowley who could either complement Tyree’s scoring or help replace it.

South Carolina (A.J. Lawson)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

The loss of Lawson would leave the Gamecocks without their top three scorers and short on obvious solutions to fill a huge hole in their backcourt. As a sophomore, Lawson would have to carry a big load as backcourt partners Evan Hinson and T.J. Moss get used to more minutes–and responsibility. South Carolina loses leading scorer Chris Silva but otherwise has a solid frontcourt returning, so the most pressing question in Columbia would be who takes over running point should Lawson leave. Frank Martin will have to get creative with his roster, but no matter what solution he settles on would leave the Gamecocks with a lower ceiling.

Nebraska (Isaiah Roby)

SI.com way-too-early Top 25 rank: Unranked

The Huskers struggled to compete in a deep Big Ten and already know they’re losing their top three scorers to graduation in James Palmer Jr., Isaac Copeland Jr. and Glynn Watson Jr. If they lose Isaiah Roby too, Fred Hoiberg's first year could end in a second consecutive trip to the NIT. Thomas Allen and Nana Akenten should lock down the guard slots, but with the graduation of Copeland and Tanner Borchardt, Roby would be the only notable frontcourt returnee. Nebraska will need him both attacking and protecting the rim if they want any shot at actually contending in the conference.

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