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St. John's morning rumble: best returning shot blocker, an early preview


Chris Obekpa is mentioned as one of college basketball's "extremists" - the most statistically extreme shot blocker returning to college hoops. From Andy Glockner in Sports Illustrated:

The Nigerian import may have been really limited on the offensive end as a freshman, but he certainly was a shot deterrent on defense. He led the nation with a 15.8 percent blocked shot rate. As in, he blocked one out of every six or seven shots attempted by Red Storm opponents all season. He set a school record with 11 blocks against Fordham and averaged 4.1 rejections per game.

Not a lot has gone right for the Johnnies over the last couple of seasons as Steve Lavin and Co. have sought talent that either hasn’t arrived or has underperformed, but they now have a defensive anchor in Obekpa and a less-imposing league in which to operate this year.

Truth telling. Glockner also adds a video of Obekpa's blocks vs Detroit last year, so check it out.

Rumble_icon_x-small_copy_medium Kieran Lynch lets us know that the Big East's former Facebook page is now the American Conference Facebook page...

Where will we get our FB updates, y'all?

Rumble_icon_x-small_copy_medium From our Around the Big East update, St. John's soccer will travel to Creighton to be the Bluejays first Big East home soccer game in the fall. No indication yet if that's the Johnnies first Big East match or not. St. John's went 10-5-4 overall, losing in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Red Storm return ace goalkeeper Rafael Diaz.

Creighton went to the national semifinals, beating Akron and Connecticut along the way before losing to champion Indiana, who knocked off Georgetown for the NCAA crown..


Athlon Sports decided to put together a preseason preview. Already. In men's basketball. Take a look, come back and comment. Here is their St. John's blurb - expect a deep look at the Big East within the next month and a half.

5. ST. JOHN’S (17-16, 8-10 Big East, NIT second round)

The Red Storm are poised for a rebound after missing the NCAA Tournament last season. Sampson averaged a quiet 14.9 points and 6.6 rebounds last season. He’ll make up an imposing frontcourt with Achiuwa, who redshirted last season, and Obekpa, who averaged four blocks per game. Jordan was one of the nation’s top high school point guards.