clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Isaiah Briscoe announcement tonight at 6 - a big moment for St. John's

New, 6 comments

The point guard will be a game changer for one college program. An overview of the gravity of tonight's decision.

USA TODAY Sports

Even though 2015 point guard Isaiah Briscoe won't sign a National Letter of Intent tonight, he will verbally commit to either St. John's, Connecticut or Kentucky on ESPNU.

According to ESPN's Top 100 recruiting list for 2015, the 6' 3" guard ranks 13th overall and 1st at his position.

Briscoe is clearly interested in staying close to home. Steve Lavin and St. John's hope that is enough of a lure to bring the Roselle Catholic guard into the fold and jumpstart a well-regarded recruiting class - a class St. John's needs to contend next season.

Isaiah Briscoe loves New York City, Madison Square Garden and the St. John's fans impressed him during Late Night Madness, but what has really stood out for the point guard is the way the program has treated him.

According to sources - including Adam Zagoria, Zach Braziller and Jeremy Schneider - Steve Lavin has been recruiting Briscoe for three years and he has grown close to his family.

Lavin not only cares about Isaiah Briscoe the basketball player but Isaiah Briscoe the person, and that is one of the reasons the school has a strong shot at landing the talented young prospect. Briscoe likes Steve Lavin right back.

In Queens, Briscoe will have a huge impact and will play major minutes right from the start for the St. John's Red Storm. In Lexington, there will be no defined role for him right away considering all the players they bring in and ship out to the pros.

Lavin has always been a terrific recruiter, but this would be the best player he has brought in as the coach of the Johnnies. Briscoe would be a program changer as the New Jersey recruit is a strong combo-guard who certainly has a future in the NBA.

To say that the 2015 recruitment class is crucial would be an understatement. Six players, including D`Angelo Harrison, will likely graduate after this season and Rysheed Jordan and Chris Obekpa are likely to leave the program to turn to the professional ranks.

On top of the losing most of the roster, the program also struggled to put together a strong class this past year. Keith Thomas and Adonis Delarosa, who were both added on late, failed to become eligible for this season. Adonis' future at the school is up in the air and Keith Thomas is gone from the program -  bad publicity in the long term, and a struggle for the remaining players in the short term.

Despite all of the departures, if Briscoe does indeed choose St. John's, this could impact some other youngsters looking to make their decision. Players are going to want to play with someone that can distribute the ball as well as score at will with his strength. Lavin would have snagged a star away from John Calipari and that would not go unnoticed with other high schoolers.

2015 shooting guard Brandon Sampson, is considering St. John's. With Briscoe in the mix he could look to join forces to create a potent young backcourt. Sampson is also looking at LSU and USC, but he did visit the St. John's campus during the weekend of Red Storm Tip Off.

Even Cheick Diallo, the Our Savior New American power forward, could also give the program more of a look. The big man is originally from Mali but living in New York; but at this moment the Johnnies are on the outside looking in. Cheick is considering Pittsburgh, Kentucky, Kansas and Iowa State in addition to St. John's.

The long-term future of St. John's basketball is not dependent on Isaiah Briscoe. But to land a player of his caliber this early in the year could jump start what will be an important recruiting class for the Red Storm, one that can get St. John's on track to be a national contender once more.

No, Briscoe's commitment won't irrevocably change the future, not without other commitments. But, it means a lot.