Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Dakari Johnson, perhaps the top player in the nation in the Class of 2014, could be on the move.
After spending his freshman season at Elizabeth (N.J.) St. Patrick under head coach Kevin Boyle, the 6-foot-10 Johnson toured Blair (N.J.) Academy earlier this week.
“He visited on Monday,” said Blair coach Joe Mantegna, who coached NBA players Luol Deng of the Chicago Bulls and Charlie Villaneuva of the Detroit Pistons.
“He’s a Blair type of kid. We had a great visit and he would be in a long line of great kids here.”
Led by Kentucky commit Michael Gilchrist and Western Kentucky signee Derrick Gordon, St. Patrick was unbeaten and ranked No. 1 in the nation before falling to St. Anthony in the North Non-Public B final March 10 at Rutgers.
Earlier this month, Boyle departed to take a new position at Montverde (Fla.) Academy outside Orlando and was replaced by Chris Chevannes.
“I would think there may be a player or two who may say, ‘I want to transfer because I came to play for coach Boyle,’ so it might diminish the talent level a bit,” St. Patrick principal Joe Picaro said.
“But there’s so much talent here that we certainly fill every gap if somebody left.”
Makini Campbell, Johnson’s mother, is an English teacher at St. Patrick.
She recently said by text that “everything is quiet right now” and would provide an update if anything changed.
Still, Mantegna said he expected Johnson would go through the application process at Blair.
“He’s still looking at a couple of other schools,” he said. “They’re going to go through the application process and we’ll see what happens.”
Johnson is a skilled, nimble post player who has already received interest from Kentucky, Syracuse, Georgetown, Seton Hall and other programs.
His departure would have a major impact both on St. Patrick and on Blair, a private school that plays in the New Jersey Prep A tournament.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
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.