We released our final player rankings for the men's college basketball recruits in the 2022 class, and this group of players now becomes the next class of freshmen.
Several players held onto the No. 1 spot and in the top 10. Emoni Bates and Jalen Duren reclassified up and played at Memphis this past season. Shaedon Sharpe then took over at the top, but he enrolled at Kentucky. Jazian Gortman, ranked No. 7 at one point, went to Overtime Elite.
In the end, there were 23 five-star prospects and several of them proved they have the potential not just to be college stars, but also future lottery picks in the NBA draft.
Dereck Lively held onto the prestigious No. 1 ranking with his physical measurables -- 7-foot-1 with a 7-foot-8 wingspan -- not to mention his skill set. He utilizes his frame to block shots and finish lobs, along with having a capable face-up game. His best basketball is clearly down the road when his time at Duke is done.
Dariq Whitehead, Lively's future Blue Devils teammate, made a late charge for the top spot after winning MVP at the McDonald's All American Game and leading Montverde (Florida) to a championship at GEICO Nationals. He will bring a vertical presence, versatility and maturity on both ends of the floor at Duke.
Arkansas signee Nick Smith showed off his skills and spirit at the McDonald's All American Game and received MVP honors at the Jordan Brand Classic. His high school teammate Kel'el Ware, an Oregon signee, might have the most upside of anyone in the class.
Dillon Mitchell (Texas) was also MVP at the Jordan Brand Classic and has the best vertical, as well as the quickest second jump, in his class. Anthony Black (Arkansas) caught the eyes of NBA scouts at McDonald's and Hoop Summit with his 6-7, 190-pound size and playmaking ability. Brandon Miller (Alabama) moved up the rankings at the end of the season with his active game and scoring skills. Tre White (USC) finished strong at GEICO Nationals and climbed from his No. 34 ranking to inside the top 25.
The group of 2022 prospects collectively shows off strong versatility and will bring excitement and future star power to the college game, and some will be intriguing one-and-done prospects.
But what about the classes that come next? With the 2022 class signed and sealed, we also updated our prospect rankings for the 2023 ESPN 100, 2024 ESPN 60 and 2025 ESPN 25. We break down three key recruits in each class and analyze what makes each so special.