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St. John's makes Isaiah Briscoe's final list; pursuit of Sampson, Mussini, Doughty, Kasongo

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Briscoe cuts his list to three and Lavin travels to Italy to see Mussini.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The 2014-2015 college basketball season is two weeks away. Meaningful basketball is on the horizon and soon experts will see if their predictions hold water. While the season will kick off in two weeks, college coaches still have to worry about building towards the future. Steve Lavin has been very aggressive over these past two weeks and has even made a trip to Italy.

Isaiah Briscoe G 2015

It appears that Briscoe enjoyed his time at Midnight Madness and at the St. John's practice at Madison Square Garden. This past week Briscoe cut his list to three schools - UConn, St. John's and Kentucky.

St. John's and Kentucky appear to be in the lead. But UConn cannot be dismissed entirely due to its tournament success in the last decade. The official fall signing period will take place from November 12-19, but there is no guarantee that Briscoe will sign before 2015 starts.

After their strong showing during Midnight Madness, St. John's has taken the lead in the 247Sports Crystal Ball prediction.

Brandon Sampson G 2015

The guard from Louisiana visited USC this weekend. There is no word on when he will decide, but St. John's appears to be high on his list.

In a recent interview with Scout Hoops, his coach, Jeff Jones raved about Sampson's time at St. John's. "He enjoyed his trip to St. John's," said Jones. "He got to see Madison Square Garden and he watched them scrimmage when he was there and see the team and meet the coaches. New York City is New York City, and what is there not to like about that, so he definitely liked the city."

Coach Jones also talked about the early playing time St. John's can offer factoring into Sampson's decision.

Samir Doughty G 2015

Doughty is a 6'3 guard from Philadelphia, who was supposed to visit St. John's this weekend - after cancelling a trip to Seton Hall.

Last year he averaged 17 ppg, 6 rebounds, and led his team to an appearance in class A state championship. Doughty is recognized by scouts as a top scorer, but they also say he needs to have more focus on the other side of the floor.

Doughty has offers from La Salle, Temple, St. Joseph's, Rhode Island, James Madison, George Mason, and has also received interest from Seton Hall.

This past weekend Doughty took home MVP honors at the 8eye Classic, a game which included highly regarded prospect, Derrick Jones.

Federico Mussini G 2015

Steve Lavin visited the 6'2" Italian guard Mussini in Milan this weekend.

Federico Mussini is a talented scorer who has been compared to Stephen Curry by some due to their similar body types. Mussini,who has also received interest from  Gonzaga, plans to visit St. John's sometime this year.

If Mussini decides to play college basketball in America, he will have to worry about eligibility issues. Many European prospects such as Enes Kanter have had issues getting clearance from the NCAA; though knowing that he wanted to keep the option of playing in the United States open, Mussini may not have the same issues.

If Mussini does get clearance, St. John's will have a formidable foe in Gonzaga. Mark Few has had great success recruiting in Europe. This year he recruited Domantas Sabonis from Lithuania, who many believe is a future NBA prospect.

Ray Kasongo JC 2015

The talented forward from Canada is known by most for his odd recruiting history. Kasongo originally committed to play at Oregon, but was denied admission.

According to Brad Winton of jucorecruiting.com,the plan for Kasongo is to play a year at Southern Idaho and then attempt to play D1 basketball again. St. John's assistant coach Jim Whitesell will travel to see Kasongo at Southern Idaho.

Luis Montero JC 2015

St. John's has had interest in the forward from Westchester Community College for a while.

Of interest: this week it was revealed that an assistant coach at the college provided phony transcripts for Jamell Walker and Damien Davis who now attend Florida A&M. Both players were dismissed from the team. There is no word if any other players or coaches were involved.

Samir Doughty video