I know the wait is long overdue, however this is the second installment of our SBC WBB power rankings. The second half of this list was very difficult to rank with many teams close in the race. All of these programs have the potential to win the conference this season, but before any action begins, here are the breakdowns of what to expect.
7. Georgia State
Although a 10-16 record is not a good foundation to build on, the addition of Tia Lewis and Jon Bollier to their coaching staff increases the ceiling of this program tremendously. Lewis was formerly the assistant coach to Georgia Southern, reaching an 18-10 record which was a decade-high for the program. Jon Bollier was the former associate head coach at Samford University and became back-to-back regular season champions. The Panthers have all the pieces in place, and I expect major improvement, I just believe they are one or two seasons away from reaching their true potential.
6. Appalachian State
The state of this program is very interesting. After a team loses their two top scorers it normally drops the strength in the team. However, the three-headed weapon of Janay Sanders, Faith Alston, and Emily Carver have all the tools needed to run the offensive system and will continue off their success from last season. You can also expect true freshmen Nadiyah Bird to be a defensive anchor after being named defensive player of the year her senior year of high school and Alexis Black to make an impact after averaging 21 points per game, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists her senior season.
5. Old Dominion
Coming off a 24-10 season, the Lady Monarchs look to be at the top of the SBC in their first season after joining the conference. Last season, the Lady Monarchs dominated their competition defensively, only allowing 55.8 points per game, averaged 10.6 steals per game, and 3.9 blocks per game. The term “defense wins championships” will define this program’s success this season and I expect a top 5 finish.
4. Texas State
I know that the 15-14 record is not appealing whatsoever. However, this program has only 2 players that are underclassmen. All but 4 players have returned for another season and this season is all-or-nothing. Transfer Timia Jefferson averaged 12.7 points last season and transfer Taelour Pruitt averaged 9.9 points per game will both look to improve an already successful offense.
3. Georgia Southern
Georgia Southern shocked everyone in the SBC last season. After going 21-33 from 2019-2021, head coach Anita Brown went 18-10 in her third season, which was the program’s highest since the 2009-2010 season. The majority of the roster from last season is returning and graduate transfer Andreana Wrister is ready to take this offense to a whole new level.
Louisiana is incredibly dominant on both sides of the court. Louisiana held their opponents to only 57.9 points per game last season while also having 6 players average more than 9 points per game. While many of the top scorers have returned, the most exciting include Nubia Benedith who has recorded double digit steals every season and averaged 5.6 points per game for North Florida. I expect a deep run in the SBC tournament with the possibility of a championship appearance.
As the number 1 seed and the regular season SBC champions, the Trojans will look to maintain their dominance that has occurred throughout the Chanda Rigby era. Former 5th overall pick in the WNBA, Chelsea Dungee has joined the Trojan staff as Rigby’s assistant coach. Felmas Koranga was the scoring leader for the Trojans, averaging 12.6 points per game. A total of 8 transfers have been brought in to the program to join Koranga at the top of the conference. The top transfers include former Rajin’ Cajun Makayia Hallmon (11.8 points per game) and former Crimson Tide Nia Daniel.
The SBC women’s basketball season tips-off on Monday, November 7th with 11 out of 15 teams competing.