On campus

News, thoughts and more from the world of college sports across the nation and Long Island.

Chris Obekpa stays at St. John's

St. John's Chris Obekpa shoots over Creighton's Ethan

(Credit: AP / Jason DeCrow)

St. John's once again has one of the top shot-blocking centers in the nation. Red Storm coach Steve Lavin announced on Friday afternoon that Chris Obekpa will be allowed to return for his junior season in 2014-15 after previously being granted a release to transfer.

"Chris approached me last week to communicate his change of heart and wishes to stay at St. John's," Lavin said in a statement....

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Steve Lavin's NCAA express stalls

St. John's Rysheed Jordan hits for two in

(Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy)

For the past month, St. John's has been one of the hottest teams in college basketball. The Red Storm rose like a phoenix from the ashes of its 0-5 start in Big East play to win nine of its next 10 to climb into firm contention for an NCAA Tournament bid.

But momentum only is as good as your last game, and in this case, coach Steve Lavin’s team has come crashing back to earth with two straight...

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Steve Lavin: 'We can take flight'

St. John's D'Angelo Harrison hits for two during

(Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy)

When he comes to the media room, St. John’s coach Steve Lavin dons reading glasses with thick black frames, but not because he needs them to look back with 20-20 hindsight. No, Lavin stayed true to the vision he has held all along about this Red Storm team as a group that would struggle early before ascending in February and March.

It seemed more like wishful thinking when the Red Storm began...

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Steve Lavin’s Johnnies bounce back

St. John's center Chris Obekpa shoots a free

(Credit: Getty Images / Maddie Meyer)

          It almost seemed like a gift when Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard announced the suspensions of starters Eugene Teague and Brian Oliver before Thursday night’s St. John’s game at the Prudential Center in Newark. The long climb out of the 0-5 hole the Red Storm dug at the start of Big East play had been draining, and they were due for a letdown...

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Red Storm feeling pressure of losing

St. John's Sir'Dominic Pointer charges up the court

(Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy)

If ever St. John’s wanted to get off to a fast start out of the gate this season, it was Thursday night against Providence at Carnesecca Arena. The Red Storm came into the game off four straight losses to start Big East play, including a blown lead at the end of a loss to so-so DePaul two nights earlier on the road.

But after two opening foul shots by God’sgift Achiuwa, St. John’s got buried...

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Rysheed Jordan takes command

St. John's Rysheed Jordan takes an inside shot.

(Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy)

Highly recruited freshman point guard Rysheed Jordan has had moments this season that hint at his promise for St. John’s. There was his 13-point effort and tough defense in a loss to No. 2 Syracuse and his career-high 17 points in a loss at Xavier.

But the Philadelphia native really stepped up against a foe from his hometown in the Red Storm’s 74-67 loss to No. 8 Villanova Saturday afternoon...

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Steve Lavin: Fewer threes, please

Orlando Sanchez poses for a portrait at the

(Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy)

The box score sometimes offers a blueprint for how a game went beyond the final score. That was the case for St. John’s 73-57 victory over Wagner in its home opener Friday night at Carnesecca Arena.

The one figure that jumped off the page like a red warning light was the Red Storm’s 0-10 shooting from three-point range. That means St. John’s (1-1) is 2-for-23, which is 8.7 percent, for the...

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St. John’s warms up for Wisconsin

St. John's guard Sir'Dominic Pointer reacts next to

(Credit: AP Photo Joe Raymond)

No one will mistake Division II Humboldt State as a credible sparring partner for St. John’s, but if nothing else, the Red Storm got an ego boost and worked up a good sweat as it pounded the Lumberjacks, 106-39 Monday night at Carnesecca Arena.

The final tuneup for Friday night’s season opener against Big Ten power Wisconsin in Sioux Falls, S.D. went far more smoothly than Saturday’s nail-biting...

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Rysheed Jordan commit is big St. John’s win

Steve Lavin of the St. John's Red Storm

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

The pieces are falling into place for St. John’s coach Steve Lavin, who landed the most important one yet when Philadelphia point guard Rysheed Jordan verbally committed to the Red Storm Thursday morning. With the help of top recruiter Tony Chiles, Lavin essentially wooed Jordan out from under the nose of Temple coach Fran Dunphy as well as third finalist UCLA, Lavin’s former employer.

That’s...

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