According to Jon Rothstein, the St. John's 2014 recruiting season is NOT over.
The 6'8", 250 pound forward from Thomasville, Georgia, picked Georgia Tech over Georgia early in the signing period of the 2012 season. He averaged 10.5 points and seven rebounds in 26.5 minutes per game in his two years.
But Carter is a solid forward, grabbing 28% of available defensive rebounds (7th in the country among qualifiers, per KenPom.com), taking 25% of the shots (like a true focal point of a team) and blocking shots at a decent rate - all while hitting 53% of his shots inside the arc with a few three-pointers sprinkled in (32/117 on threes, 27%).
Carter missed 10 ACC games with a torn meniscus in his left knee, but played fairly well. He scored in double figures in 8 of his 10 games after returning from the injury for the 16-17 Yellow Jackets, including 12 points in a win over Syracuse.
And if you're wondering, Robert Carter had nine points and five rebounds in the Barclays Center consolation round loss to St. John's in November.
Carter, likened to Glen "Big Baby" Davis as a prep by ESPN, was a top-30 recruit. He started 48 of Georgia Tech's 54 games that he played in.
The one wart on Robert carter's game seemed to be an urge to step away from the basket and become a finesse player rather than a power post player he seems built to be.
Carter's decision to leave Georgia Tech
Carter received his release from the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets earlier this week.
Former coach Brian Gregory does not sound like a coach who wanted Carter to leave - and he does not agree with his choice.
"Although this is disappointing, we wish him the very best in his continued career," Gregory said. "Transferring has become commonplace; it is now part of the culture and fabric of the college basketball landscape. You have to move on and keep building."
Carter was rumored to have interest from Maryland, Auburn and South Carolina originally; the interest from St. John's is new.
In a conversation with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Carter opened up about why he left.
"My plans are [to]... make a decision based on who’s recruited me and then who has what I want, who can help me achieve my goals the best," he said Thursday in an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Those goals, he said, are going to the NCAA tournament and developing his game and body to play professionally.
"Georgia Tech was a good school, a great school," he said. "I just felt like I needed to put myself in a better position to accomplish the goals that I set for myself, and that’s it."
Tough quotes for a coach to hear.
St. John's hopes the Red Storm program will have an appeal for a player like Carter. Stave Lavin's scheme allows big men to take deep shots (think of Orlando Sanchez' role or Jakarr Sampson's shot selection), and Lavin can sell a track record of getting players to the professional ranks.
In 2015, there will be many available roster spots, and while the team has a quartet of big men now, a player who has two years of eligibility after his redshirt season could anchor the youthful Johnnies.
Highlights of Robert Carter
Note that Carter's Shiloh high school played Wheeler High, the alma mater of St. John's walk-on David Lipscomb in 2011 (Wheeler is coached by Doug Lipscomb, David's father).
High school highlight video