Andre Curbelo is latest St. John's transfer to excel in new home | Zagsblog
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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.
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Sunday / July 14.
  • Andre Curbelo is latest St. John’s transfer to excel in new home

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    By ADAM ZAGORIA

    Andre Curbelo is the latest ex-St. John’s player to excel in his new home.

    The 6-foot point guard from Puerto Rico made his season-debut for Southern Miss on Monday night and went for 13 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists in an 82=79 win over Lamar. Southern Miss improved to 6-5 on the season.

    Curbelo, who committed to Southern Miss in June, was part of a mass exodus out of St. John’s after Rick Pitino took the job last March. Pitino kept only two players — Joel Soriano and Drissa Traore — while bringing in 10 transfers and two freshmen.

    “I asked everybody about the character on the basketball team,” Pitino, whose team is 7-3 entering its Big East opener with Xavier on Wednesday, said at his opening press conference at Madison Square Garden.

    “To be honest with all of you, I didn’t get glowing reports. I did not get glowing reports, but I did get a glowing report on Joel Soriano.”

    Because Curbelo, the former Long Island Lutheran star, was a two-time transfer who did not graduate from St. John’s, he needed waiver from the NCAA to play at his new school. But a federal judge last week set aside the NCAA transfer rule and issued a 14-day temporary restraining order allowing all transfers to compete.

    He averaged 9.6 points and 4.3 assists last season while battling injuries and clashing with former St. John’s coach Mike Anderson.

    Several other former St. John’s players are excelling for their new teams.

    David Jones, another two-time transfer who played at St. John’s last season after coming over from DePaul, is Memphis’ leading scorer at 20.3 points per game along with 6.5 boards per game. He poured in 36 in a win last month over No. 20 Arkansas and scored 29 in a victory this month over No. 21 Texas A&M and then had 22 in Saturday’s win over previously unbeaten No. 13 Clemson. Memphis entered the AP Poll this week at No. 23.

    Former St. John’s guard AJ Storr is averaging 13.7 points for No. 24 Wisconsin, and had 22 points on 4-of-6 from deep in a win over Michigan State.

    Kolby King, now a sophomore guard at Tulane (8-2), is averaging 15.6 points on 58% shooting and 4.3 rebounds after leaving Queens.

    Posh Alexander, yet another former St. John’s guard, is averaging 10.9 points, 5.3 assists and 4.2 rebounds for Butler, which is off to a 9-2 start. He scored 21 points to help lead Butler to a 97-90 double-overtime victory over California on Saturday for the Bulldogs’ fifth straight win.

    Dylan Addae-Wusu, Alexander’s former teammate at both St. John’s and Our Saviour Lutheran, is coming off a 20-point, 6-rebound, 6-assist game in Seton Hall’s 93-87 win over Missouri in Kansas City on Sunday.

    He’s averaging 8.1 points and 4.6 assists for The Hall (7-4), which hosts defending NCAA champion UConn Wednesday night in the Big East opener for both programs.

    “We could do it, whatever team it is, we could play with the best of the best,” he said after the Missouri game. “But it’s within us to compete. It’s not nobody else, we gotta come out and believe that we can do it, and just work at it, that’s it.”

    Photo: via Southern Miss Basketball

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    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.

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