So, there’s been an elephant in the room for those who keep their eyes glued to the internet sites for rumors - the idea that standout freshman point guard Marcus LoVett, a unanimous member of the Big East’s all-freshman team, might leave the program.
You may read that sentence with surprise, but yes, this is a possibility. From the NY Post:
Sources said the 6-foot LoVett will sit down with his family to plan his future, and they believe it could go either way. He will not transfer. The decision will boil down to going pro, likely in Europe, or returning to St. John’s.
Some, of course, will say “but if he had another year he could go pro in the NBA!” or some such line of thinking.
But the reality is this: Marcus LoVett is 21 years old. He’s six feet tall. Neither of those things are high on the NBA wish list, where youth and size often equal potential to scouts looking for a home run of a player.
LoVett also waited a year to start fulfilling his dream.
College students are often close to graduating - or have graduated - at 21, after all.
If he has a chance to go to Europe and play - where he would likely end up even if he stayed another year or three more years - why not go now? The body only lasts so long, after all.
LoVett is an instinctive scorer who shot 53% inside the arc in conference play and 38% from outside of the arc, assisting at a decent rate, and at times displaying a solid level of unselfishness on the floor.
The point guard is a high-usage player whose turnover rate is very good considering the amount he handles the ball. He generates steals, gets to the free throw line decently, doesn’t commit many fouls, has a very talented handle, sees passes other players can’t see (and his teammates don’t expect) and can adjust his game depending on the opponent.
Those skills could play in an overseas league where a player needs to create - like in Turkey, where D`Angelo Harrison and Phil Greene, both 2011 grads from the program, currently play.
Marcus LoVett does have improvements to make - in leading a team, in his defense. And he would have a chance to show off in higher profile games next season, where St. John’s could return every player from this roster, add the two redshirts (athletic guard Justin Simon and the forward Marvin Clark).
St. John’s could be a better team next year, with more opportunities for a passer to show off what he can do.
But life and money are important, and whatever LoVett wishes to do, fans should support. He gave a great year on the court next to Shamorie Ponds and elevated the Red Storm’s guard play by leaps.
Next year’s team will have some changes. The search for a big man, likely through the grad transfer ranks - will be key. But the staff also may need to look for a passing point guard while they are out recruiting as well.