Felix Balamou to play this year for St. John's

Balamou may not have won the dunk contest, but he can throw down. - Tim Dimas

Felix Balamou will suit up for today's Red Storm game against Detroit, giving the Johnnies 8 scholarship players available.

Per John Minko (aka the Mink Man), Steve Lavin says that 6'4" wing Felix Balamou will see some minutes for St. John's today against the Detroit Titans.

Balamou was a candidate for a redshirt year, and sat out the exhibition games against Concordia and Sonoma State. Considered a raw but athletic wing, a year on the bench would have allowed him to develop for an extra year. Steve Lavin spoke after the Concordia game about the players' status:

"If we think that someone at this stage because of where their game is at, or because of our roster and the other players isn't going to contribute in a great way, that makes more sense to redshirt somebody.

"Usually it becomes pretty clear, which I think it will in the next week or two, based on all the pieces on the table."

A teammate of shot-blocker Chris Obekpa, Felix Balamou led Our Savior New American in scoring, and impressed at IS8's spring league. He brings length to the pressure defense and elite hops to the wing position - he is an excellent finisher.

St. John's will have 8 scholarship players to use, including D`Angelo Harrison, who will come off the bench but still play starter's minutes.

There is no update on God`sGift Achiuwa's status, or on the status of Orlando Sanchez and Marc-Antoine Bourgault. Yesterday, Lavin had only a few words on the situation:

"We don't have any updates, we're just waiting to hear from the NCAA. We've done everything on our end in terms of submitting everything that needs to be submitted. I prefer not to play the speculation game, but unless we get word sometime today or early tomorrow, they won't play tomorrow."

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