The Red Storm took a major blow to its 2018 recruiting class with the loss of forward J’Raan Brooks, but how much will it affect them in the future?
On the court, the St. John’s Red Storm have won four straight games and have had some monumental upsets along the way. Despite all of that positivity, their future recruiting class for next season took a little bit of a hit on Thursday.
Zach Braziller of the New York Post reported that forward J’Raan Brooks made the decision to decommit from St. John’s after committing to the school in December. As for why he made the decision, it is a very understandable reason:
Four star forward J’Raan Brooks has decommitted from St Johns, per source. Was told he had doubts about being so far from home and didn’t think it was his best option. #sjubb
— Zach Braziller (@NYPost_Brazille) February 15, 2018
Despite St. John’s fans being disappointed by this decision, it is important to realize that Brooks has to do what is best for him. He goes to Garfield High School in Seattle, Washington, so it is understandable that he might not want to play so far from where he lives.
At the same time, when a team starts off conference play 0-11, that can have a bad impact on recruiting regardless of how many of those losses were by seven points or fewer. While the turnaround is great for St. John’s, it doesn’t completely erase the disappointing month of January that the team had.
As for how this affects the Red Storm going into next year, they had the 31st best class of 2018 according to 247 Sports, but those rankings haven’t been updated to not include Brooks for St. John’s. There are some talented players in the class in forward Josh Roberts and guard Greg Williams.
Going into 2018, St. John’s should have a lot more depth on their roster. Now, that goes without saying because the team only plays eight players at most with Marcus LoVett out for the season. It is unknown if LoVett will come back next year, but right now, the only players St. John’s will definitely lose next year are guard Bashir Ahmed and forward Amar Alibegovic.
Although the Big East is not the mega conference that it used to be, the Red Storm still have to try to keep up with perennial contenders that continue to bring in premier talent year-after-year. Currently, Villanova (#11), Providence (#16), and Creighton (#27) are ahead of St. John’s in 247’s Top-40 rankings.
Despite losing out on Brooks, the Red Storm also have more transfers eligible next year such as guard Mikey Dixon and forward Sedee Keita. St. John’s has done a good job getting impactful graduate transfers to Queens when you consider the impact that forward Marvin Clark II and guard Justin Simon have had on this year’s team.
It is important to remember that these recruiting classes are a long way from being finalized. Plus, as long as Shamorie Ponds comes back next season, St. John’s should be in a good position to contend in the Big East next year in what will be year four for Chris Mullin as head coach.
Yes, losing Brooks has an impact on how St. John’s will look next season. But, at the same time, it is important that the player makes the right decision for himself and that the Red Storm have alternative options to find impact players for the future of the program.