Humboldt State University announced on Monday that their basketball team will travel across the country, from northern California to Queens, for a preseason game on November 5th against Steve Lavin's St. John's Red Storm.
According to the Eureka Times-Standard, "recent discussions between [Humboldt coach Steve] Kinder and Red Storm head coach Steve Lavin at the NCAA Final Four led to the Jacks' opportunity to play St. John's."
The Division II Humboldt State Lumberjacks, with their school located far north in the coastal redwood forests of California, finished with an 11-15 record last year, their first losing season since 2000. Coach Steve Kinder is a former Lumberjack player who took over the head coaching job in 2010.
The Lumberjacks played Arizona last season (taking a 108-67 loss) and have played UCLA in recent years.
Much like the experience for Sonoma State last season and for Westmont in 2010, the Humboldt State Lumberjacks are excited to take on a Division I opponent, see the lights and tourist sights out east, and play a competitive game to prepare for their league season.
Steve Lavin enters his fourth year with the Red Storm with big expectations following a 17-16 season and a second-round NIT loss to Virginia. The Red Storm return most of their lineup, with only Amir Garrett leaving.
Scoring star JaKarr Sampson will come back for his sophomore season, and D`Angelo Harrison, who was removed from the roster for conduct detrimental to the team, should return. Chris Obekpa, who anchored the defense will also be back, along with guard Phil Greene IV and wing Sir`Dominic Pointer.
The Johnnies also bring back redshirted forward God`sgift Achiuwa along with newcomers sidelined this year - the talented Orlando Sanchez (reinstated late in the season by the NCAA for age-related issues), and sharpshooter Max Hooper.
The Red Storm also welcome in Rysheed Jordan, the highest-rated recruit of Steve Lavin's tenure and a point guard who can create off of the dribble.
The squad will take a summer trip to France and Italy, likely in mid-August; the trip will allow them to to get in an extra ten days of practice and game time to work on their attack.