Paige Bueckers at First Night featuring UConn’s Mens and womens basketball teams, student fans, and season ticket holders all gather in Gampel Pavilion on Friday, October 14, for First Night. The annual event introduces members of both the men and women basketball teams are oficially announced, followed by a free throw shoot-off and a dunk contest. Photo by Erin Knapp/The Daily Campus

Women’s Basketball Projected Rankings: 

1. UConn 

Stratton Stave, Associate Sports Editor 

This pick is about as easy as they get, with the Huskies not expected to give up their successful run in the Big East this year. Even though they lost their first conference game in a long time at home versus Villanova last winter, they still managed to run away with the conference title. Former NPOY Paige Bueckers is gone, so others will have to step up in her place. The two most expected to do so are sophomores Azzi Fudd and Caroline Ducharme, both of whom shined last year in Bueckers’ absence. Either way, with north of 65% of last year’s scoring out of the picture, the scoring is going to have to come from somewhere. In nearly every ranking, UConn is securely in the top 10, so we’ll see how much of that is based on the 11 banners hanging in Gampel or if it’s actually warranted, especially with the level of competition they face out of conference. 

2. Villanova 

Noah Reed, Campus Correspondent 

A team that started to show signs of a bright future last year is poised to carry that momentum into this season. Senior Maddy Siegrist looks to build her dominant pedigree with another great campaign. Siegrist is coming off a season in which she tallied a ton of accolades, including the 2021-22 Big East Player of the Year, ranking second in the nation in scoring and dropping a career-high 42 points in a game. Villanova made their first tournament appearance since 2018 last year, winning the first round against sixth-seeded BYU before falling to Michigan. The Wildcats were also finally able to beat UConn in a game this past February, the program’s first win against the Huskies since 2004. While losing two of their top three scorers, Villanova was able to get Maddie Burke (Penn State transfer) and four freshmen to fill out their roster.   

3. Creighton 

Benjamin Roy, Campus Correspondent  

After their unremarkable Elite Eight run in last year’s NCAA Tournament, the No. 21 Bluejays have made their name known. Entering his 21st year at the helm of the team, Head Coach Jim Flanery looks to keep pushing his team forward. However, he will most definitely need to adjust his team’s game plan. Their nonconformist lineup without a true center caught teams by surprise last year, but will most certainly be game-planned against them this season. The team’s depth is certainly going to bring them an advantage, as stars like Emma Ronsiek, Lauren Jensen and Morgan Maly are going to turn up the heat without a doubt. At the same time, players like Rachael Saunders can be expected to have breakout years. Creighton looks to have a better regular season in Big East Conference play this year, competing with strong teams such as UConn and Marquette, in order to keep their reputation alive and make their second straight NCAA Tournament appearance. 

4. DePaul 

George Velky, Campus Correspondent 

The Blue Demons have high expectations after a 2021 season that saw them finish with a 22-11 record. The team lost three of their top four scorers, but the backbone of the squad, Aneesah Morrow, is looking to follow up a fantastic freshman year. Morrow led DePaul in scoring, rebounding, steals and blocks last season. Her campaign saw her earn the NCAA Freshman of the Year, as well as All-Big East First Team and All-American Second Team honors. Only one other starter returns for DePaul: junior guard Darrione Rogers. The team welcomes two impactful transfers Jade Edwards (American University) and Anaya Peoples (Notre Dame). Alongside the transfers, DePaul has five freshmen on the roster that are all looking to make an impact. If the team can fill in the gaps around Aneesa Morrow — one of the best players in the nation — expect a top-five Big East finish from the Blue Demons. 

5. Seton Hall 

Cole Stefan, Staff Writer 

The Pirates had themselves a run for the ages last season, advancing all the way to the Women’s NIT championship game against the South Dakota State Jackrabbits. Although they came up short, there are several returning players that have their sights set on qualifying for March Madness. Those aspirations lie in the hands of Preseason All-Big East Team selection Lauren Park-Lane (18.3 PPG), who will run the backcourt and significantly contribute to the team’s scoring. Seton Hall also has a dominant frontcourt as Sidney Cooks and Mya Bembry have returned for another year to protect the glass (the two averaged a combined 14.1 boards per game). The Pirates may have their big three, but the looming question is who replaces Andra Espinoza-Hunter’s 15 points per game. If Seton Hall wants to compete with the best in the conference, they need someone to step up and start scoring points immediately. 

6. St. John’s 

Ben Snyder, Campus Correspondent  

The Red Storm will look to take a step in the right direction this season after they finished well below .500 last year at 12-19, including a 7-12 record in league play. Last season was not all bad as they found themselves fourth in the league with 72 points per game, third in three-pointers made and were in the top half of the league in overall shooting percentage and free throw percentage. Their offense will have to operate without their leading scorer from last season, as Leilani Correa transferred in the offseason. On the positive side, they return their second through sixth top scorers, including guard Kadaja Bailey (14.2 PPG) and will welcome Jillian Archer, a veteran in the Big East. She spent the last two seasons with Georgetown. Coach Joe Tartamella and the Red Storm will look to surge through the Big East and begin their season on Nov. 7 at home versus Monmouth University. 

7. Marquette 

Evan Rodriguez, Staff Writer 

Megan Duffy’s Golden Eagles are certainly a completely different team than last season. After the team failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament with a 23-11 record along with a WNIT third round finish, they lost four key players, including former All-Big East First Team member Lauren Van Kleunen. That’ll be hard to replace, but Coach Duffy has really been encouraged by the challenge of seeing younger players and veterans step up on the court. They were able to bring in players like Xavier’s Nia Clark and a solid freshman class led by Kenzie Hare and Halle Vice over the offseason which should be huge. Jordan King is going to be a big part of the scoring for this team after putting up 11.5 points per game last season. There are some question marks, but if the team can put the puzzle pieces together, they can definitely surprise some people.  

8. Providence 

Ava Inesta, Campus Correspondent 

The Friars are known to be a team filled with young players, as they finished eighth in the Big East Conference with a 6-14 record (11-19 overall) last season. But the Friars hope to improve their record this season, adding three new players on the team: freshman guard Kammie Ludwig, and graduate students Logan Cook and Brynn Farrell. A key returner for the Friars is Janai Crooms, who was named to the Preseason All-Big East Team. Last season she was the top scorer for Providence, being the only player on the team to average more than 10 points per game, as well as their top rebounder. Two notable contributors to the team, Alyssa Geary and Mary Baskerville, have departed from Friartown this season, which brings up concerns. The big question this season is if the new additions to the team will be able to put up productive minutes. If they continue to struggle and remain toward the bottom of the rankings, head coach Jim Crowley’s job could be in jeopardy. 

9. Butler 

Connor Sargeant, Campus Correspondent 

The only thing that went right for this squad was when they got their only win of last season against Evansville before finishing with a 1-27 record. Despite this lackluster performance from the Bulldogs, there is much to look forward to as a Butler fan. With the acquisition of the new head coach, Austin Parkinson, the Bulldogs look to establish the same winning culture he had as the winningest coach in IUPUI history. Parkinson’s effects have already been felt, as Butler gained a new transfer player in Rachel McLimore from IUPUI. Butler also will have transfers Shay Frederick and Kelsy Taylor coming in, standout players at Valparaiso and Trine University, respectively. Three players alone cannot rewrite last season’s miscues, but it is a good start. Butler is in a rebuilding year, and adding these transfer players gives them a slightly better chance this season.  

10. Xavier 

Sam Calhoun, Campus Correspondent 

For the Musketeers, they’re not coming off much success from the previous season, going 9-21 overall last year. Unlike the men’s basketball team, which is receiving high expectations, the women’s basketball team has low expectations. The Musketeers were picked to finish last in the Big East, so every conference game will matter for them. They return two starters. One is Shaila Beeler (8.2 ppg, 44.4 FG%), who led the team in assists and steals, while the other is Aanaya Harris (9.2 ppg),, who served as Xavier’s No. 3 scorer. Transfers Taylor Smith (Ole Miss) (4 ppg) and Nila Blackford (Kent State) (12.4 ppg, 9 rpg) look to contribute to a team with the bar set as low as it can be. I’m intrigued to see if Mel Moore, going into her fourth season as head coach, can turn things around. 

11. Georgetown 

Nick Spinali, Staff Writer 

The climax of the Hoyas’ 2021-22 season may have been their upset victory over eighth-seeded Providence in the opening round of the Big East Tournament, but other than that, the team had very few highlight moments. Their 10-19 record last season, including a subpar 4-15 in conference play, won’t excite many, and the loss of top scorer Milan Bolden-Morris will be a major blow to the offense. However, Georgetown returns a trio of last season’s starters, including No. 2 scorer Kelsey Ransom. The team added some depth with transfers, including Duke’s Jade Claude and Florida’s Kristina Moore. Even then, the Hoyas aren’t expected to be much better than they were last season as the preseason coaches’ poll projects them to finish tied with Butler for ninth in the conference. Sixth-year Head Coach James Howard will look to rewrite that narrative, though redirecting a team that has tallied three consecutive sub-.500 seasons will be a daunting task. 

Men’s Basketball Projected Rankings: 

10/14/22 First Night by Erin Knapp Uconn’s Mens and womens basketball teams, student fans, and season ticket holders all gather in Gampel Pavilion on Friday, October 14, for First Night. The annual event introduces members of both the men and women basketball teams are oficially announced, followed by a free throw shoot-off and a dunk contest.

1. Creighton 

Benjamin Roy, Campus Correspondent 

Hidden in the cornfields of Nebraska are the No. 9 Bluejays, piloted by coach Greg McDermott. The Jays were high-flying last year, as they made it to the second round of March Madness, but were shot down by the eventual national champion Kansas Jayhawks. The sophomore trio of Arthur Kaluma, Ryan Nembhard and Trey Alexander can be expected to lead the team back to the NCAA tournament this year, along with junior center Ryan Kalkbrenner. South Dakota State transfer Baylor Scheierman is also a notable weapon on this team, and there is no doubt going to earn himself a starting role in Creighton’s dangerous rotation. With an even more experienced front five, the Blue Jays are going to inflict damage on the rest of the conference, as they look to capture their first Big East title win ever as a program. 

2. Villanova 

Noah Reed, Campus Correspondent 

As one of the most consistent teams in the Big East, Villanova looks to continue its success this season. Veteran forwards Brandon Slater and Eric Dixon look to lead this young Wildcats team back into the Final Four for the second straight season. Villanova took some big hits this offseason with the departures of hall of fame head coach Jay Wright and long-term guard Collin Gillespie, but found ways to recover. Kyle Neptune, a former Villanova assistant, accepted the head coach position after one season at Fordham. Incoming five-star recruit Cam Whitmore adds yet another weapon to a strong offensive attack. As for returners, senior Justin Moore is expected to make a return in the middle of the season as he recovers from an Achilles injury he suffered in last season’s tournament. If Moore can recover and Whitmore plays up to the hype, Villanova can make another deep run this season. 

3. UConn 

Jon Synott, Sports Editor 

It should be an interesting season for the Huskies, as they look to continue to be a force in Dan Hurley’s fourth year as head coach. They boast the Big East Preseason Player of the Year in Adama Sanogo, who went off for 14.8 points and 8.8 rebounds per game last season. He looks to be a major contributor on both ends of the court. The losses of four key contributing seniors hurts, as well as the departure of five to the transfer portal. Hurley has brought in an influx of new transfers: Tristen Newton and Nahiem Alleyne from East Carolina and Virginia Tech, respectively. Freshmen Alex Karaban and Donovan Clingan expect to contribute, while sophomore Jordan Hawkins is primed for a breakout campaign. Amongst the changes, this UConn squad hopes to compete at the top of the conference and win its first NCAA Tournament game since 2016. 

4. Providence 

Ava Inesta, Campus Correspondent 

Last season, the Friars made a trip to the Sweet 16, their deepest run in the NCAA Tournament since 1997. Head coach Ed Cooley will return, coming off being named Big East Coach of the Year and the first Friars coach to win the Werner Ladder Naismith Coach of the Year Award. Joining the six returning players in the lineup, eight newcomers will be welcomed on the Friars. A key player returning for the Friars is graduate student Jared Bynum. Last season, he was a breakout star, earning All-Big East Second Team honors and the Big East Sixth Man award. He was one of the team’s leaders in scoring and assists, and was the team’s best three-point shooter. The Friars have their eyes set on another banner season and defending their Big East regular season title. The strength of this team is their depth, with a combination of experienced veterans and young stars who have tons of potential to succeed.  

5. Xavier 

Sam Calhoun, Campus Correspondent 

After winning the NIT last season, Xavier has hopes of making the NCAA Tournament and more this season. They will have a new but familiar head coach this year in Sean Miller, who was successful in his first tenure with the team before leaving for the Arizona job. Despite losing Paul Scruggs (11.7 PPG) and Nate Johnson (10.3 PPG) in the offseason, there is potential for the Musketeers to win the Big East. When Big East Media Day arrived, it was learned that Xavier was selected to finish second in the standings behind Creighton. The two key players to watch this season are Jack Nunge (13.4 PPG, 7.4 RPG) and Colby Jones (11.6 PPG, 7.3 RPG, 3.2 APG). Nunge was named to the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award Watch List, while Jones was named to the Julius Erving Award Watch List. A glue guy for them will be Zach Freemantle (10.4 PPG, 17 double-doubles). Watch out for UTEP transfer Souley Boum (19.8 PPG, 4.5 RPG), who will start immediately. 

6. Marquette 

Evan Rodriguez, Staff Writer 

This may be the most underrated team in the Big East, as signified by a No. 9 ranking in the Big East Preseason Poll. This team has plenty of guys who are going to make this program exciting to watch, along with the coaching of Shaka Smart. Oso Ighodaro is a guy who, according to Smart, is going to make much larger touches in year three, and the combination of Cam Jones and Tyler Konek is going to be crucial for this roster. One guy to highlight who may not have an immediate impact is Sean Jones, who’s shown an awesome combination of speed, athleticism and more that should make him an exciting prospect. The Daily Campus has the Golden Eagles at sixth, but if the team can stick to the team oriented basketball that Smart has preached throughout the offseason, they could finish much higher. 

7. St. John’s 

Ben Snyder, Campus Correspondent 

The Red Storm will be looking to improve from a season that saw them go 17-15 and make it to the quarterfinals of the Big East Tournament. They were eliminated by Villanova, who went all the way to the Final Four. The Red Storm took a big blow this offseason, as they lost their leading scorer and two time All-Big East First Teamer Julian Champagnie to the NBA as he signed with the Philadelphia 76ers. They also lost their third-leading scorer and Connecticut native Aaron Wheeler. Head Coach Mike Anderson will heavily rely on junior guard Posh Alexander, who was second on the team in points per game, and first in both assists and steals. They also welcome David Jones (14.5 PPG) from DePaul and André Curbelo from Illinois. Curbelo was projected to be an All-American last season, but was unable to perform to the level of his expectations. If he is able to find his form from his first season, he could be an excellent addition. Expectations are not very high this season, but the Red Storm will be looking to prove the doubters wrong starting on Nov. 7 in a battle against Merrimack. 

8. Seton Hall 

Cole Stefan, Staff Writer 

The Pirates find themselves in a transition period heading into this season. Gone are the days of Kevin Willard, who bolted off to Maryland after 11 seasons at the helm. In comes Shaheen Holloway, the former head coach at Saint Peter’s who led his squad to the Elite Eight in an unprecedented March Madness run, to take the coaching reins at his alma mater. Kadary Richmond (8.8 PPG), a Preseason All-Big East Second Team selection, becomes the next big Pirate star after Jared Rhoden’s departure to the professional level. Alexis Yetna (8.1 PPG, 7.6 RPG) decided to return for his fifth year and one of Tray Jackson or Tyrese Samuel will step up after Ike Obiagu and Bryce Aiken left the program. Put those four together with Jamir Harris — among others — and Holloway has the talent to stick it close with anyone in the conference. 

9. DePaul 

George Velky, Campus Correspondent  

The Blue Demons will struggle to take another step forward after a bounce-back campaign led by Tony Stubblefield in his first season as head coach. DePaul finished last year with a 15-16 overall record and a 6-14 conference record. Though the squad is moving in the right direction, they lost their top scorer, Javon Freeman-Liberty (21.7 PPG), to the NBA draft and their second leading scorer, David Jones (14.5 PPG), in a transfer to St. John’s. On the bright side, DePaul has its big man, Nick Ongenda, returning to hold down the defensive paint and junior guard Jalen Terry also returning. As long as Terry can improve his consistency, DePaul will have a talented guard up top. The most exciting arrival for the Blue Demons is redshirt freshman Ahamad Bynum. The electric guard was a Top 100 recruit last year but unable to play due to eligibility issues. Until Bynum can prove himself, the expectations are not high for DePaul this season, and the team will likely finish in the bottom third of the conference. 

10. Butler 

Connor Sargeant, Campus Correspondent 

This will be a rebuilding year for Butler. Last season, the Bulldogs finished with a 14-19 record and a 6-14 record in conference play. It is also interesting to note that Head Coach LaVall Jordan will not be returning to the Bulldogs this year; instead, a familiar face will return as head coach: Thad Matta. Matta has the 27th-best winning percentage as a head coach and has already made his impact felt by bringing in transfers Eric Hunter Jr. (Purdue), Manny Bates (North Carolina State), Ali Ali (Akron) and Jalen Thomas (Georgia State). Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, Thomas will be out until December with a pulmonary embolism. Mixed with injuries, departing stars and an offense that ranks 187th in the nation for efficiency, it will be tough to see Butler finishing anywhere near their 2016 season — when they made it to the second round of March Madness — let alone finish above 10th in the conference. 

11. Georgetown 

Nick Spinali, Staff Writer 

Georgetown was able to ride all the way to a conference title two seasons ago, but their title defense proved to be a letdown; the team went 6-25 overall last season and failed to register a win against a conference opponent. The Hoyas, who are importing seven players from the transfer portal and a pair of freshmen, will be returning only five players from last year’s roster. The incoming class was ranked as high as No. 2 on’s Transfer Portal Class Rankings. One of those “new” faces will be senior center Qudus Wahab, who was with Georgetown for the first two seasons of his career before spending a season at the University of Maryland. He was an All-Tournament member during that championship run a couple of years ago. Another, sophomore Brandon Murray, was one of the most sought-after transfers in the portal following a freshman season that saw him named to the SEC All-Freshman Team for the LSU Tigers. With NBA legend Patrick Ewing leading as the team’s head coach, Georgetown’s future looks bright, though another rocky season appears to be in the works this year. 


Men’s Basketball DC Staff Picks: 

Player of the Year: Adama Sanogo, F, UConn 

Freshman of the Year: Cam Whitmore, F, Villanova 

Coach of the Year: Shaka Smart, Marquette 

All-Conference Team: 

Ryan Kalkbrenner, C, Creighton 

Jared Bynum, G, Providence 

Ryan Nembhard, G, Creighton 

Colby Jones, G, Xavier 

Jack Nunge, F, Xavier 


Women’s Basketball DC Staff Picks: 

Player of the Year: Maddy Siegrist, F, Villanova 

Freshman of the Year: Ayanna Patterson, F, UConn 

Coach of the Year: Jim Flanery, Creighton 

Big East All-Conference Team: 

Azzi Fudd, G, UConn 

Caroline Ducharme, G, UConn 

Aneesah Morrow, F, DePaul 

Lauren Park-Lane, G, Seton Hall 

Emma Ronsiek, F, Creighton 


Men’s Basketball Projected Starting 5 

Jonathan Synott, Sports Editor,, he/him/his, (860)-204-2197 

Evan Rodriguez, Staff Writer,, he/him/his, (860)-819-5473 

Tristen Newton, G (Evan) 

Newton is one of the players that could take this team to new heights. He put up a quality 17.7 points and five assists last season, which made him one of the top guards in the transfer portal this past offseason. I think his 33.3% three-point shooting percentage is better than what the statistics say. I could see those 1.4 steals per game from last season going up in a Dan Hurley system, while he’ll also need to be more of an officiator on offense as he finds one of the many weapons in the UConn starting lineup. Best of all, he’s a player who’s shown that he can be counted on with his scoring, especially at the free throw line with an 87.9% shooting rate at the free throw line. He needs to lower the turnovers, but if everything clicks for Newton, he’s going to be an underrated weapon on this team. 

Jordan Hawkins, G (Evan) 

This is the guy for UConn basketball who you need to watch out for. Hawkins can really put the ball in the basket, as signified by multiple double-digit scoring games, including a 16-point performance in an upset win against Auburn in 2021. He’s going to be the focal point of the offense alongside Adama Sanogo with his shooting and athleticism, and whether it’s his three point shooting or ability to finish through traffic, he’s crucial to the offense this season. He’s really benefited from being under a Dan Hurley system and it’s shown in his impressive on-ball defense where he’s been able to contest shots and avoid fouls. If Hawkins takes the next step in his progression, not only will he be a critical part of UConn’s team this season, but he’ll also be on his way to a selection in the NBA Draft.  

Andre Jackson, G (Jon) 

While sitting out the first few games of the year due to a pinky injury, Jackson will return at full force, providing a key boost for the Huskies on both ends of the court. The newly-crowned captain has the ability to do it all, adding 6.8 points, 6.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists per contest last season. When he works his way back into the lineup, Jackson should be a primary ball-handler — an orchestrator for an offense with plenty of weapons. While his turnovers have been concerning in the past, his aggressive playstyle is overwhelming for opposing defenses, allowing him to attack the rim or dish out a flashy assist. On the opposite end, Jackson led UConn in steals with 38 and blocked 20 shots last year. A true leader by nature, the upstate New York native will bring energy and character to this team night-in and night-out. 

Samson Johnson, F (Evan) 

He’s perhaps one of the biggest question marks on this team, but coach Dan Hurley has constantly expressed his belief in the abilities of Johnson. This is a guy who can stretch the court with his shooting, while also providing some solid interior defense. The biggest key for Johnson is finishing through contact. Most of his scoring was attributed to mostly tip-in finishes and open finishes due to defensive hiccups. Johnson has voiced that he’s put on weight over the offseason, which should help with dealing with Division I big men, so that’s a big step in the right direction. That extra time in the weight room should provide great results on both sides of the court and will help mold him into a more complete player with his versatile skill set.  

Adama Sanogo, C (Jon) 

What else is there to say about the Big East Preseason Player of the Year? One of two captains on this Husky squad, Sanogo is ready to improve upon his very successful 2021-22 campaign, which culminated in an All-Big East First Team nod. The junior has been a top scoring threat for UConn in his first two years, putting up a second-best 14.6 points per game while adding so much on the glass, grabbing a conference-high 8.8 rebounds per game. While most of his damage has occurred in the post, Hurley has alluded to Sanogo working on his perimeter shooting— similar to Isaiah Whaley last year — adding yet another tool to an already versatile offensive weapon. On the defensive end, Sanogo is an absolute punisher, blocking 55 shots and adding 25 steals last season. Expectations are certainly high for Sanogo, one of the top centers in the country. 


Husky Hoopla: WBB Projected Starting 5 

Stratton Stave, Associate Sports Editor,, he/him/his, 914-733-2286 

Cole Stefan, Staff Writer,, he/him/his 

Nika Mühl, PG (Stratton) 

A junior from Croatia, Mühl serves as the glue that holds this Husky attack together. The point guard won Big East Defensive Player of the Year last year not because of her tangible numbers, but more because of her ability to consistently guard the other team’s best player. As good as Mühl was defensively, a lot of the team’s success will ride on how she’s developed as a scorer. She took just 3.5 shots per game last year, a figure that will not fly without star Paige Bueckers on the floor. A breakout year feels imminent–and perhaps necessary — for Mühl, and everyone knows that she has the heart to get it done. 

Azzi Fudd, G (Cole) 

Fudd did not have the same freshman season that Bueckers did, but she flashed her potential in the games she played. The most notable instance of her ability to knock shots from downtown came against Tennessee, where she buried seven three-pointers for 25 points. In 25 games, Fudd shot 43% from beyond the arc on 135 shots and averaged 12.1 points per game. Although she did miss 11 games due to a foot injury, those numbers show why she was the number one recruit in the 2021 class. Expectations are once again high for Fudd, who was named to the Preseason All-Big East Team, and she will easily meet them if she remains healthy the entire season and takes her defensive game to the next level. 

Caroline Ducharme, G/F (Stratton) 

After Fudd, Ducharme is the player who people are most looking to as the best candidate to replace Bueckers’ lost production. Recovering from hip surgery that apparently held the wing back last year, there’s no reason she can’t take a massive step in production. Ducharme averaged 10 points per game last year, but the number rose all the way up to 19 during an eight-game stretch when Bueckers was hurt. She also demonstrated that she isn’t afraid of the big moment when she nailed a buzzer beater to beat DePaul. Her role this year should continue to be as a pure scorer, one that she is very comfortable in. With the mixture of the hip not holding her back and getting the freshman experience out of the way, Ducharme is primed for a great campaign. 

Aaliyah Edwards, F (Cole) 

Edwards took a step back in her production during her sophomore season, averaging 7.9 points per game at a 52% clip and 5.1 boards per game, even though she was one of two players to not miss a single contest. To help improve her craft, Edwards spent the summer on campus rather than competing for a spot on Canada’s World Cup roster. The Preseason All-Big East selection has a physical game, but also needs to make sure that she can avoid foul trouble, as UConn’s depth at the position has decreased after the departure of Olivia Nelson-Ododa and the loss of Ice Brady to a season-ending injury. Expect Edwards to be a force on both sides of the ball, especially if she stays out of foul trouble. 

Dorka Juhász, F/C (Stratton)  

Among the large contingent of international players on the UConn roster is Juhász, who really found herself down the stretch of her first year in Storrs. The Ohio State transfer started out unsure of the type of impact she’d be making, but was able to carve out a role, starting with her 16-point, 16-rebound effort against UCLA. As impressive was her two-game stretch where she scored a combined 43 points and 12 boards in a pair of wins over DePaul and Marquette. Although Juhász was a bit inconsistent at times, the 6-foot-5 stretch big was able to open the floor up to the tune of over 30% from deep. She exited the Huskies’ Elite Eight victory over NC State with a broken wrist just three minutes into the game, but will be back and ready to run it back in her fifth collegiate season. 

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