2024 NBA Mock Draft 5.0: Will another French prospect be the No. 1 overall pick?

College basketball is in the back half of its season and, by now, scouts and executives are very familiar with players in the states and internationally. There is still no consensus No.1 overall prospect, and a lot will likely depend on how teams fall in the lottery, with this year being more about team need over the best prospect available.

The top half of the lottery continues to be filled with international prospects, most of them coming out of France, with Alex Sarr (playing in Australia's National Basketball League but originally from France), Zaccharie Risacher and Tidjane Salaun all projected in the lottery.

Two newcomers have cracked the first round, with plenty of buzz surrounding Providence guard Devin Carter and how well he's been playing lately and Jaylon Tyson out of Cal with his size and offensive production.

Here's an updated look at Yahoo Sports' first-round projections for the 2024 NBA Draft.

(Draft order is from Tankathon as of Feb. 19.)

(Taylar Sievert/Yahoo Sports illustration)
(Taylar Sievert/Yahoo Sports illustration)

1. Detroit Pistons: C Alex Sarr

Ht./Wt.: 7-1, 205 pounds | Perth Wildcats (Australia)

Sarr made his return to the court after being sidelined with a minor hip injury for the last three weeks. In his most recent game, he put up 17 points, four rebounds and two blocks off the bench in front of a handful of NBA scouts that made the trek over to Australia to see him in person. His rim protection and versatility will get him looks as the No. 1 overall pick in June.

2. Washington Wizards: G/F Zaccharie Risacher

Ht./Wt.: 6-9, 204 pounds | JL Bourg (France)

Risacher is one of the best 3-point shooting wings in the draft class, making 44.6% of his 139 attempts from behind the arc this season for JL Bourg-en-Bresse. He gets bullied at times on defense and will need to add weight to his frame to avoid getting targeted in the NBA. The Wizards drafted another French prospect in Bilal Coulibaly and have obviously scouted the LNB Pro A league well over the years.

"There is so much talent coming up in France, it's crazy," Coulibaly told Yahoo Sports recently. "I'm familiar with Risacher and a few others, and they are all very talented, so I'm excited to see what they do in the NBA next year."

3. San Antonio Spurs: G Nikola Topić

Ht./Wt.: 6-6, 201 pounds | KK Mega Basket (Serbia)

Topić has been out since January with a left knee injury but made a strong case as a top-five pick early on with how well he played in the Serbian league, averaging 16.4 points and 6.1 assists per game. Scouts are drawn to him for his passing and patience as a playmaker, something that is very translatable to the NBA and a particular area of need for the Spurs.

4. Charlotte Hornets: F Cody Williams

Ht./Wt.: 6-8, 185 pounds | Class: Freshman | Colorado

Williams, the younger brother of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Jalen Williams, has been up and down all season but shows promising potential as a long-term NBA prospect. Defensively is where he shines with his ability to efficiently guard positions 1-4 with his footwork and athleticism. On offense, he is turnover-prone at times and struggles to make quick decisions off the bounce.

5. Portland Trail Blazers: G Ja'Kobe Walter

Ht./Wt.: 6-5, 195 pounds | Class: Freshman | Baylor

Walter is a pure shooter and has great size. He shoots with confidence, and it's clear he has the green light to let it fly from anywhere from head coach Scott Drew. In a recent win over West Virginia, Walter attempted 14 3s (making four of them) and finished with 23 points. He's finding more creativity off the dribble and doing a better job of keeping players in front of him on defense, something he struggled with at the beginning of the season.

6. Toronto Raptors: G Rob Dillingham

Ht./Wt.: 6-2, 178 pounds | Class: Freshman | Kentucky

Head coach John Calipari has let Dillingham play freely within his system and hasn't tried to force him to be anything else than what he is as a player. Dillingham is one of the quickest guards in the draft class with the ball in his hands and has improved in his separation off the dribble when getting a shot off. In back-to-back games earlier this month, Dillingham averaged 27.5 points, 6.5 assists and only one turnover.

Matas Buzelis, left, of the G League Ignite, shoots the winning basket over Brandon Miller, right, of the Charlotte Hornets, during an NBA Rising Stars basketball game in Indianapolis, Friday, Feb. 16, 2024. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
The G League Ignite's Matas Buzelis had an impressive showing during the Rising Stars Challenge at All-Star Weekend. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

7. Memphis Grizzlies: F Matas Buzelis

Ht./Wt.: 6-9, 212 pounds | G League Ignite

Buzelis hit the game-winning shot during the semifinals of the Rising Stars tournament off a midrange baseline jumper and didn't back down from playing against some of the best first- and second-year players in the NBA. His body has improved from last year, adding 20 pounds of muscle, and he's settled into his shot with how well he's squaring his shoulders and getting his feet set.

8. Houston Rockets: G Reed Sheppard

Ht./Wt.: 6-3, 187 pounds | Class: Freshman | Kentucky

Sheppard's production as a freshman for Kentucky has been impressive all season long. He has great instincts on defense, averaging just under three steals per game, and can play on or off the ball offensively. He isn't afraid to step into long 3s and has become a great passer when getting downhill, dishing out 4.1 assists per game in 28 minutes.

9. Atlanta Hawks: G/F Ron Holland

Ht./Wt.: 6-8, 206 pounds | G League Ignite

Holland's season with the Ignite is over after he suffered a thumb injury late last month. It's been a rough year for the Ignite, who have struggled to win games, and it's been frustrating for NBA scouts to watch the young prospects when games are so lopsided. Holland is one of the best players in transition with his second burst and how well he finishes at the rim. He didn't shoot well from 3-point range, although he was a high-volume shooter this season, connecting on just 24% attempts from 3-point range.

10. Oklahoma City Thunder: G/F Tidjane Salaun

Ht./Wt.: 6-9, 203 pounds | Cholet (France)

The NBA comparison for Salaun is Denver Nuggets wing Michael Porter Jr. with how confidently he shoots from the outside, along with his length and skill set. He's had a great season for Cholet, playing in France's LNB-Pro A league and had one of his best games of the season in a win over the Metropolitans 92, scoring 20 points (4-for-8 from 3-point range) in only 20 minutes. Salaun will be one of the youngest players in this draft class, turning 19 in August, and has tremendous upside and potential at the NBA level.

11: Oklahoma City Thunder: C Kyle Filipowski

Ht./Wt.: 7-0, 220 pounds | Class: Sophomore | Duke

Duke runs a lot of its offense through Filipowski and hunts for mismatch situations. He's so good at sealing his defender and, when facing up, he favors his two-dribble spin move to finish on the right side of the basket. Filipowski's biggest knock coming into his sophomore season was his 3-point shot, and he's improved in that area, shooting 34.5%.

12. Chicago Bulls: G Stephon Castle

Ht./Wt.: 6-6, 215 pounds | Class: Freshman | UConn

Castle has been named the Freshman of the Week eight times this year and has adapted to his role for No. 1 UConn well over the course of the season. The Huskies have so many offensive threats, and Castle moves well off the ball and doesn't force things. In a recent win over DePaul, Castle finished with 15 points, six assists and zero turnovers in 27 minutes.

13. Portland Trail Blazers: C Yves Missi

Ht./Wt.: 7-0, 235 pounds | Class: Freshman | Baylor

Missi is one of the best rim-running bigs in college hoops and has really learned how to establish position on the block on both offense and defense. He moves extremely well for his size and has a ton of room for improvement, especially in the pick-and-pop where he has not been utilized this season with how well Baylor's guards shoot from behind the arc.

14. New Orleans Pelicans: G Dalton Knecht

Ht./Wt.: 6-6, 215 pounds | Class: Senior | Tennessee

No college player has had a better individual season than Knecht. While known for his offensive grittiness and shot creation, his defense has improved and he's not getting burned off the dribble as much as he did during his time at Northern Colorado. Tennessee could make a run in the tournament and NBA scouts will be watching Knecht closely on a big stage and during pressure situations.

Post Lottery

15. Orlando Magic: F Tyler Smith

Ht./Wt.: 6-11, 224 pounds | G League Ignite

Smith participated in the Rising Stars tournament during All-Star Weekend and held his own against Victor Wembanyama and Chet Holmgren. His biggest knock coming into this season was his footwork defensively and his physicality, and he's definitely improved in those areas. His size as a defensive threat and how well he shoots the 3 will make him an intriguing prospect who could sneak into the lottery.

16. Miami Heat: G/F Kyshawn George

Ht./Wt.: 6-8, 200 pounds | Class: Freshman | Miami

George has been all over the place this season, but his size and upside are what's getting him the most attention as a potential mid-first round prospect. The Heat have a strong, established rotation and could take a shot on George as more of a draft-and-stash pick and take time to develop him.

17. Toronto Raptors: G Isaiah Collier

Ht./Wt.: 6-5, 210 pounds | Class: Freshman | USC

Collier was out for nearly a month with a hand injury and many wondered if he would shut it down after the disappointing season USC is having. To his credit, he returned and looks much better than the start of the season. His first choice is always to get to the rim or inside the lane, but he's showing more promise as an outside shooter, knocking down 2-of-5 attempts from behind the arc in an overtime loss to Colorado recently.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 10: Providence Friars guard Devin Carter (22) dribbles down the court during the men's college basketball game between the Butler Bulldogs and Providence Friars on February 10, 2024, at Hinkle Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, IN. (Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Providence's Devin Carter is playing his way into the first round. (Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

18. Atlanta Hawks: G Devin Carter

Ht./Wt.: 6-3, 195 pounds | Class: Junior | Providence

Carter's breakout season has been fun to watch with how well of a shot creator he is and the way he can finish through contact. He recently scored 31 points on 14 shot attempts (including seven 3-pointers) and added 13 rebounds and three assists in the win over DePaul. He's relentless on defense and is good at leading the break off turnovers. Carter is a player to watch and could continue to rise up draft boards as he closes out the season.

19. New York Knicks: C Kel'el Ware

Ht./Wt.: 7-0, 223 pounds | Class: Sophomore | Indiana

Ware has had a 20-point, 10-rebound performance in three out of his last five games and although Indiana is struggling in the Big Ten, Ware has been productive. He has great timing as a shot blocker, recording four blocks in his last game, and has improved in his pick-and-roll defense.

20. Philadelphia 76ers: G Carlton "Bub" Carrington

Ht./Wt.: 6-5, 190 pounds | Class: Freshman | Pittsburgh

Pitt has won five straight games and even though Carrington has had quiet shooting nights down the stretch, he's found other ways to impact the game positively, averaging seven assists in the last two outings. He's a player who could easily get his a shot off early in the season, but as conference play started, teams limited his touches and he's recently been more of a playmaker.

21. New York Knicks: G Kevin McCullar Jr.

Ht./Wt.: 6-7, 212 pounds | Class: Senior | Kansas

McCullar missed two games with minor injuries and has been the go-to player offensively for No. 9 Kansas. He can score from all three levels on the court and is strong enough to guard bigger players off the switch on defense. As a fifth-year senior, McCullar could be added into the secondary rotation right away with his size, strength and physicality.

22: Phoenix Suns: G Jared McCain

Ht./Wt.: 6-3, 195 pounds | Class: Freshman | Duke

McCain has steadily improved all season, and NBA scouts have watched his confidence grow, particularly in pressure situations. He tied the Duke freshman single-game scoring record (held by Zion Williamson) with 35 points in a win over Florida State recently, going 8-for-11 from 3-point range. McCain is a player who has found ways to win at every level, makes the right plays and is an excellent shooter.

23. New Orleans Pelicans: C Ulrich Chomche

Ht./Wt.: 6-11, 235 pounds | Cameroon

Chomche has taken a few college visits and could either stay in this draft class or wait a year. NBA scouts are already intrigued by the talented center from Africa's NBA Academy and will get a closer look at him during the Nike Hoop Summit in April when he'll again be playing in front of several NBA scouts and executives during a week of practices and an all-star game.

24. Milwaukee Bucks: G/F Dillon Jones

Ht./Wt.: 6-6, 235 pounds | Class: Senior | Weber State

Jones is averaging 20.5 points, 9.5 rebounds and 5.3 assists in the Big Sky conference and has flirted with a triple-double in three out of his last four games. He's more athletic than what meets the eye and has a high IQ that will undoubtedly shine through once teams bring him in during the pre-draft process.

25. Denver Nuggets: F Tristan da Silva

Ht./Wt.: 6-9, 220 pounds | Class: Senior | Colorado

Da Silva is a versatile, inside-out forward who has been a consistent offensive threat for the Buffaloes. He makes up for his lack of quickness with how efficient he is as a shot creator and can be a plug-and-play guy at the next level with his size and experience.

26. Washington Wizards: G Jaylon Tyson

Ht./Wt.: 6-7, 215 pounds | Class: Junior | Cal

Tyson's role at Cal has been very ball-dominant, and it's hard to predict how effective he will be off the ball at the NBA level. He's had a massive season at Cal and his case as a first-round pick will only continue to grow after a 28-point performance in a close win over Washington on Feb. 17. He's a high-volume shooter (attempting 16 shots per game), but as teams start to double-team him or force the ball out of his hands, Tyson is finding his teammates, averaging 4.7 assists in the last eight games.

27. Cleveland Cavaliers: C Donovan Clingan

Ht./Wt.: 7-2, 280 pounds | Class: Sophomore | UConn

The UConn center has dealt with nagging injuries all season long and looks to be full strength to finish out the season. In the last two games, Clingan has been effective in the paint. In just 17 minutes of playing time in a blowout win over Depaul on Feb. 14, Clingan recorded a season-high five blocks and added 10 points and five rebounds.

28. Utah Jazz: F Bobi Klintman

Ht./Wt.: 6-10, 225 pounds | Cairns Taipans (Australia)

Klintman has great size and is comfortable stepping out along the perimeter and making plays off the pick-and-roll. During his freshman season at Wake Forest last year, scouts didn't get a chance to see him as a 3-point threat, but he's been able to showcase more of his outside shooting in the NBL, averaging nearly four attempts per game. Defensively, his footwork needs a little bit of work, and at times he's caught reaching or losing position off the block.

29. Minnesota Timberwolves: G/F Johnny Furphy

Ht./Wt.: 6-9, 202 pounds | Class: Freshman | Kansas

Furphy's minutes have increased significantly in the back half of the season, and Furphy has shown more consistency on offense. He makes quick decisions off ball rotations and is getting more effective when putting the ball down instead of just remaining a threat in the catch-and-shoot. Furphy had a three-game stretch in January where he averaged 17 points and shot 56% from 3-point range on six attempts per game.

30. Boston Celtics: G/F Ryan Dunn

Ht./Wt.: 6-8, 216 pounds | Class: Sophomore | Virginia

Dunn is one of the best defensive wings in college basketball, defending all positions on the perimeter and with his ability to drop down on the block and protect the rim. In a win over Wake Forest on Feb. 17, Dunn recorded a season-high seven blocks and added nine rebounds. His outside jumper remains an area of development, shooting just 22.2% from 3-point range.