Hunter Dickinson, the most sought-after transfer in the portal, announced his commitment to Kansas on Thursday.
Dickinson, a 7-foot-1 junior, spent the last three seasons at Michigan and established himself as one of the country’s premier big men. He entered the portal in late March and Kansas, along with several others including Kentucky, Villanova, Georgetown and Maryland, jumped at the opportunity to get him aboard.
Ultimately, it was Bill Self’s Jayhawks who came out on top.
How will the Hunter Dickinson transfers affect Kansas — and college basketball as a whole — next season? Here, we look at its impact on the NCAAB betting market and more.
Is Kansas Now a National Championship Favorite?
Not quite, but following the Hunter Dickinson transfers, Kansas certainly has solidified itself among the shortlist of contenders to cut down the nets next April. The Jayhawks return Dajuan Harris, a standout point guard, and K.J. Adams from their Big 12 championship team while adding transfers Nick Timberlake (Towson) and Arterio Morris (Texas) and a celebrated freshman class.
Dickinson averaged 18.5 points, 9.0 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks while shooting 56% (42.1% from 3) last season. His presence will give Kansas a unique mix of size, athleticism, and physicality in the post. His ability to space the floor should make things easier for those around him, especially Harris, who averaged 8.9 points and 6.2 assists as a junior.
Dickinson’s resume includes a Big Ten Freshman of the Year award and three All-Big Ten honors, plus recognition as a Second Team All-American in 2020-21.
Already expected to be in the Top 10 of the 2023-24 rankings, Kansas is unsurprisingly also near the top of the national championship betting market. After opening at +2200, the Jayhawks’ title odds have jumped to +1400. Those are the third-best odds on the board, matching reigning national champions UConn and Marquette.
It’s obviously still early in the offseason, so you can expect plenty more movement on this front before November rolls around.
If not Kansas, Then Who is Atop the Board?
Duke won the ACC Tournament in Jon Scheyer’s first season but lost in the second round of the NCAA Tournament to Tennessee. Star center Kyle Filipowski (15.1 PPG, 8.9 RPG) is back, giving the Blue Devils a legitimate Naismith Award contender, while Tyrese Proctor and Mark Mitchell have also vowed to return. Five-star recruit Jared McCain will join them, giving Scheyer and Co. reason to believe next season could be special.
Meanwhile, Kentucky is bringing in the nation’s top-ranked recruiting class, highlighted by DaJuan Wagner Jr., Robert Dillingham, and Justin Edwards. Cason Wallace and Jacob Toppin will be forgoing their remaining college eligibility to enter the NBA Draft, but Antonio Reeves and 2021-2022 National Player of the Year Oscar Tshiebwe are both still weighing their options and could decide to return to school. Either way, John Calipari and Co. seem primed to make a deep run after falling in the second round of the Big Dance to Kansas State.
UConn — which covered the NCAAB point spread in all six NCAA Tournament wins — could vault up the board again if Andre Jackson Jr. decides to bypass the draft and come back for another year. Donovan Clingan is poised to take on a more significant role with center Adama Sanogo headed to the pros. The Huskies are also bringing in a highly touted recruiting class, including five-star guard Stephon Castle, and continue to seek reinforcements in the portal.
Big East foe Marquette is expected to return all five starters from a team that won the conference regular-season and tournament titles. That includes Big East Player of the Year Tyler Kolek, who averaged 12.9 points, 7.5 assists and 4.1 rebounds while shooting 47.1%.
Are More Moves in the Works for Kansas?
Perhaps, but none that’d be as impactful from Day 1 as the Hunter Dickinson transfers. Kansas remains in the mix for top-10 recruit Mackenzie Mgbako, who recently decommitted from Duke. Mgbako is also reportedly considering Indiana, Louisville and St. John’s.
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