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St. John's recruiting update: Justin Brownlee joins 09-10 recruiting class

Justin Brownlee, profiled earlier this week, signed with St. John's. Welcome, Justin.

From the official Red Storm Sports release:

"We wanted to address specific needs with this recruiting class. We wanted to improve upon three things - our ballhandling, our ability to shoot and score, and our overall athleticism. With this class, we were able to address all three," said Roberts.

"Justin is an extremely versatile basketball player, who will be able to fill a number of roles on our team," said Roberts. "He is a gifted athlete with an incredible ability to score and create."....

"St. John's may have gotten the steal out of all of junior college," said Jerry Mullen of Mullen's Roundball Review, a national junior college recruiting service. "He is really talented. As a freshman he dominated JUCO ball in the state of California, and before that he was being recruited by several high-major Division I programs out of high school. Justin is a great kid and a really good get for St. John's."

At 225 pounds, he will definitely see some time down low for St. John's, backing up Burrell, Thomas, Evans, and Coker; for a running team, Brownlee might have some potential to make an impact.

One should know better, given the official St. John's evaluation of players who come in, than to take the words "score" & "create" & "steal" at face value.

But it seems like Brownlee is certainly talented enough to get looks from decent teams, unlike some other players who have come (and sometimes gone) through the program. Hopefully his athleticism also translates to being able to defend multiple positions.

The recruiting class now includes:

  • point guard Malik Stith;
  • shooting guard/ wing Omari Lawrence;
  • shooting guard/ 3-point specialist Dwight Hardy (who comes in as a junior);
  • and now Justin Brownlee (who comes in as a junior).

Once again, I must mention that the junior class includes Boothe, Burrell, Evans, Horne, Coker, Thomas, and Kennedy. So now the rosterocalypse in 2011 will be 9 players deep, leaving only Omari Lawrence, Malik Stith, Quincy Roberts, and whoever receives a scholarship after Anthony Mason Jr. graduates next spring.

There are long term ramifications to this signing. But the addition of Justin Brownlee means that Norm Roberts is looking to win as much as he can now. Which is, of course, what every coach is trying to do, since their employment contracts are really at the pleasure of the school and boosters. There does not seem to be a public ultimatum/ mandate from Athletic Director Chris Monasch or President Father Harrington, so we do not need how much Norm Roberts needs to win before his job is in any danger.

One assumes he needs to reach a real post-season tournament - and Monasch did once say, when pressed, that the NCAAs are a reachable goal for 2010 (audio).