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Indiana women’s basketball: What next year’s lineup could look like

The Hoosiers lost just one starter from a Big Ten championship team... but it was a big one.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: FEB 19 Womens Purdue at Indiana Photo by Jeffrey Brown/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Alright, at this point I’ve seen enough Grace Berger highlights with the Indiana Fever to have absorbed the fact that she won’t be playing for Indiana next season.

I didn’t want to title this/cover it as the idea of “replacing” Berger. That’s just not possible. She’s likely the greatest player in program history as the Hoosiers’ highest WNBA Draft pick who led Indiana to heights previously only dreamt of.

But her departure does leave a spot in Indiana’s starting five open next season. She was the only 2022-23 starter who won’t return.

How could that spot be filled? Who can take over some of her role? Let’s talk about it.

Indiana women’s basketball: Potential lineup in 2023-24

  • F Mackenzie Holmes
  • G Sydney Parrish
  • G Yarden Garzon
  • G Chloe Moore-McNeil
  • F/G ??????

Let’s start out with what we just about know for sure.

Mackenzie Holmes will all but certainly be Indiana’s leader on and off the court next season. Sydney Parrish played her way into a starting role after beginning the season off the bench. Yarden Garzon is the team’s go-to shooter and has an incredible amount of potential as a 6-3 guard. Chloe Moore-McNeil is the team’s go-to perimeter defender and was one of the most turnover-averse passers in the country last year.

Those four will, in all likelihood, remain starters. All bring the ability to stretch the floor as shooters if/when Holmes faces a double team. As for that last spot? Teri Moren has a few options.

G Lexus Bargesser

Indiana Hoosiers guard Lexus Bargesser (1) plays against... Photo by The Bloomingtonian/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

If they want to go for a true point guard, they have one entering her sophomore year: Lexus Bargesser. Here’s what Moren had to say about her after signing day:

“We are thrilled that Lexus is a Hoosier,” Moren said. “When we started recruiting for our Class of 2022, we knew we need a point. We feel that we got the best fit for us in the entire country. Lexus plays with a pace and an IQ that will help us continue to be successful. She is a competitive player with elite athleticism that can do a little bit of everything.”

Bargesser suffered a torn ACL/MCL in her left knee during her senior year of high school and played the 2022-23 season with a brace on that leg. As Moren said, Bargesser is highly athletic with the ability to score from multiple spots on the floor and play the usual tenacious Indiana defense.

A noteworthy wrinkle is that Indiana lost associate head coach Glenn Box, who coached the team’s guards, to the head coaching job at Miami this past offseason. Amber Smith is likely to take over those duties heading forward.

One way or another, Bargesser is likely the pick if Indiana wants a point as its final starter.

G Sara Scalia

Michigan State v Indiana Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

Indiana already has some starting experience on the roster: Sara Scalia.

Scalia began the season as a starter before shifting more to a bench role as Parrish emerged and took over a starting role. She was a vaunted 3-point shooter at Minnesota, but the change to Indiana came with a different scheme/defensive emphasis.

Maybe another offseason of work will lead to a starting role? Another floor spacer for Holmes?

We’ll see.

Someone else?

Indiana University coach Teri Moren coaches against Miami... Photo by Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Or it could be neither of the above!

I don’t think Moren will roll with two forwards, starting Holmes alongside Meister or Currie-Jelks, both of whom have some ability to shoot from the arc. Indiana has a talented freshman duo entering the program in Jules LaMendola and Lenee Beaumont (scouting report coming soon!).

Perhaps one of them emerges. Maybe Henna Sandvik takes a step forward in her development.

We’ll see, but the staff has proven they can get the best out of the talent they land, so I wouldn’t worry about them figuring it out.