St. John’s Sampson Expected to Return, Harrison ‘Intends To’ Come Back
WASHINGTON — St. John’s freshman forward JaKarr Sampson is expected to return for his sophomore season and sophomore guard D’Angelo Harrison “has intentions” to stay, a source with direct knowledge told SNY.tv.
If both players return to join last year’s core along with the additions of big man Orlando Sanchez and sharpshooter Max Hooper, St. John’s will be a very deep team in the new Big East in 2013-14.
The source said the 6-foot-8 Sampson was “99.99 percent” likely to return a year after winning Big East Rookie of the Year honors.
A seven-time Big East Rookie of the Week, Sampson led all league freshmen in scoring (14.9 ppg, 12th overall) and rebounding (6.6 rpg, 12th overall).
“I wouldn’t mind coming back another year,” Sampson said upon winning the award earlier this month.
St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin said then he expects Sampson back in 2013-14.
“JaKarr and I have spoken about it and he’s really look forward to the group of players that are coming back here to St. John’s and wants to be a part of us winning big, he’s been very clear about that,” Lavin said.
As for Harrison, the source said he “must show improvement and consistency as a leader over the spring/summer” in order to return.
He was suspended March 1 for the remainder of the season for what a source called a “pattern of behavior.”
St. John’s also adds the 6-9 Sanchez, who was given a waiver to play next season after the NCAA ruled him ineligible this season, and the 6-6 Hooper, a Harvard transfer who sat out last season.
The Johnnies remain in the mix for 6-4 Philly Vaux Roberts guard Rysheed Jordan, who is considering Temple and UCLA still despite UCLA’s coaching transition.
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.