Where did Rutgers basketball fall in the ESPN Way-Too-Early-Top 25?

The hype for Rutgers men’s basketball is real, with the Big Ten program making the ESPN top 25 for next season.

Rutgers checks in at No. 21 on ESPN writer Jeff Borzello’s list. They are one spot behind Maryland and one of five Big Ten programs ranked on the first top 25 of preseason.

With McDonald’s All-Americans Ace Bailey and Dylan Harper coming to campus in June, there are expectations that Rutgers can have a special season.

Duke is the top team in Borzello’s projections. UConn, winners of back-to-back national championships, check in at fourth in the nation.

In writing about Rutgers, Borzello offers a balance to the hype about the arrival of Bailey and Haper to the Scarlet Knights:

“Both should have a transformative impact on the team next season — but Steve Pikiell will have to surround the two with some veteran pieces. The return of Jeremiah Williams is a boost, and Pikiell has already landed Tyson Acuff (Eastern Michigan) and Zach Martini (Princeton) from the portal.”

To read Borzello’s full top 25 rankings, click here.

As for the Big Ten, here is how the conference looks according to Borzello:

  • No. 6 Purdue

  • No. 19 UCLA

  • No. 20 Maryland

  • No. 21 Rutgers

  • No. 24 Wisconsin

Borzello has Ohio State and Michigan State as part of his ‘Next In Line’ grouping.

Story originally appeared on Rutgers Wire