For the second straight year, St. John's has gotten off to slow a start in Big East play. After losing to DePaul, and beating Marquette, the Red Storm are now 2-4 in conference play.
Fortunately the recruiting trail has been a lot kinder to the St. John's program. Last week St. John's received a commitment from Brandon Sampson, a top 50 prospect. Steve Lavin is still looking to add to the 2015 and 2016 classes.
Marcus LoVett (G, 2015, Morgan Park HS, Chicago, IL)
Last week, the New York Post reported that Marcus LoVett would visit St. John's. LoVett, a 6'0 guard who plays in Chicago, is known for his flashy dribble moves and his scoring ability. St. John's has already recruited two guards for their 2015 class; however, neither Doughty or Sampson are true point guards.
LoVett has the skills to be a true point guard at the next level. In addition, recruiting a talented guard like LoVett might attract bigger recruits.
Cheick Diallo, the top-15 forward who has been a longtime target of Steve Lavin, reportedly wants to see who else St. John's recruits at point guard before deciding. LoVett is the type of explosive player that can bring a lot of buzz to a program.
Getting a commitment from LoVett will not be easy. Illinois, Kansas, Georgetown, Tennessee, DePaul, Georgia Tech have all shown interest in the talented guard. LoVett recently was spotted watching Illinois play Indiana. A commitment from LoVett would truly add excitement to St. John's 2015 class.
Georgios Papagiannis (C, 2015, Marousi, Greece - Panathinaikos)
Papagiannis is a 7 footer from Greece. Steve Lavin has had success recruiting internationally, so it is no surprise that he is on their radar.
The big man now plays for Panathinaikos in Greece, but he played high school ball in Pennsylvania. His coach at the Westtown school told SNY.tv that the Greek national "is a top five, one-and-done, 2016 pick," though he is not yet listed on DraftExpress' 2016 Draft board.
Papagiannis is said to have an above average basketball IQ, but is limited by his athleticism and quickness. Since he currently plays for a pro team, there will obviously be questions about his eligibility.
However, his current contract preserves his amateur status. Maryland, Penn State, Kansas, and Temple have also shown interest. St. John's fans may have trouble pronouncing this prospects name, but the troubles will be worth it if he comes to Queens.
Nick Rakocevic (F, 2016, St. Joseph's HS, Chicago, IL)
St. John's recently extended offer to the forward from Illinois. Rakocevic is currently a junior who plays for St. Joseph's high school.
He is also a member of the Mac Irvin Fire AAU club which happens to be the same club Marcus LoVett plays for. The big man is currently a top 100 prospect in the 2016 class, making his recruitment extremely competitive. He has received interest from Illinois, Wisconsin, Duke, Kansas, and Creighton.
St. John’s has now offered 2016 PF Nick Rakocevic of St. Joseph’s (IL).— Alex Kline (@TheRecruitScoop) January 19, 2015