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.
NEW YORK — St. John’s may well add 6-foot-7 wing Amir Garrett at the semester break in December, his prep school coach told SNY.tv.
“He is carefully following through the proper NCAA guidelines under somewhat unique circumstances to reach his goal of being a member of the St. John’s University basketball team sooner rather than later,” Bridgton (Maine) Academy coach Whit Lesure said by text.
Asked if Garrett could be eligible in December, Lesure added, “It certainly seems likely from my view. Yes.”
Lesure said Garrett has signed the necessary paperwork to attend St. John’s.
Garrett signed a National Letter of Intent with St. John’s, but was then declared academically ineligible in September, along with fellow Johnnies commits JaKarr Sampson, 6-8, and Norvel Pelle, 6-10.
Both players have subsequently decommitted from St. John’s, but could still opt to go there in 2012.
Ricardo Gathers, a 2012 forward out of Reserve (La.) Riverside, also decommitted, but said St. John’s remains an option.
As for Darrick Wood, a 6-4 shooting guard from New Jersey now at Bridgton, his situation is somewhat more complicated given the fact that he has attended multiple schools, including NIA Prep, which itself had four players ruled ineligible this fall.
“Anytime a young man has attended multiple high schools, the process is generally slower and more complex for everyone concerned,” Lesure said of Wood, who has not yet signed an NLI. “But he’s focused on the full year moving forward.”
The addition of Garrett in December would help St. John’s, which is currently operating with just eight scholarship players, including one, Jamal White, who was a walk on.
St. John’s meets Arizona Thursday night in the 2K Sports Classic, and will face either Texas A&M or Mississippi State Friday. The Johnnies still must travel to Kentucky Dec. 1.
Bridgton will play this weekend in the National Prep Showcase in New Haven.
“Wish I can watch my brothers play tonight but I’m on the road going to Connecticut for a tournament. Goodluck boys be there soon,” Garrett Tweeted Thursday.
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.