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.
With St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin looking on, 6-foot-9 Chris Obekpa put on quite a show Thursday night for Our Savior New American.
Obekpa notched 11 points, 15 rebounds and 20 blocks as unbeaten Our Savior (11-0) beat National Christian (Md.), 87-56, at Our Savior.
Felix Balamou, a 2012 wing also being courted by St. John’s, added 13 points and Nick Lewis had 20 off the bench.
“Steve Lavin was front and center,” Our Savior assistant Eric Jaklitsch said, adding that the 20 blocks were legit.
“Coach Lavin has started personally recruiting Chris. He came out to see him. He spoke to him personally on the phone. Lav calls him and everything. We sat behind the bench at the Louisville game.”
Jaklitsch said Providence, Cincinnati, Seton Hall and UConn were also heavily involved with Obekpa, who plans to sign in the spring.
“Everybody’s trying to get involved with this kid,” he said.
No visits have yet been set.
“He’s stil trying to find time,” Jaklitsch said.
Lavin will head to the Spalding Hoophall Classic this weekend to watch Obekpa and 2012 targets JaKarr Sampson and Ricardo Gathers, as well as Amile Jefferson.
Lavin told SNY this week he has no timetable on a return to coaching while he recovers from prostate cancer surgery.
He has said he’s acting in a “general manager” type role and staying in constant touch with the coaching staff, while handling recruiting efforts.
St. John’s earlier this week landed Texas A&M transfer Jamal Branch, who told SNY.tv he’s working on getting the 6-8 Gathers to join him in Queens.
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.