Johnnies Look to Start 2-0 vs. Central Connecticut

(Assistant Coach Mitch Richmond works with Guard Justin Simon during St. John's Media Day)

Jamaica, NY--A series that includes one single meeting, back in 1990. At that time, George H.W. Bush was the 41st President of the United States, and Home Alone was released in theaters, and of course Lou Carnesecca was still the coach of the then "Red Men". The now St. John's Red Storm (1-0) play host to the Central Connecticut Blue Devils (0-2) on Tuesday night on the campus of St. John's University.

In the teams season opener versus New Orleans, the team scored 77 total points, with 23 of those coming from second year sophomore Marcus LoVett. He was named to the seasons first Big East Weekly Honor Roll yesterday, that included three assists and four steals on the evening en route to a 1-0 record. 

The Johnnies were out rebounded by a wide margin of 42-27, which could cause a major problem down the stretch with teams such as Seton Hall and Georgetown. The points off the bench was a big issue as well. The last opponent in New Orleans scored 33 points off the bench, compared to the Johnnies whopping 8 total.

Projected Lineup for St. John's Red Storm

G- Marcus LoVett

G- Shamorie Ponds

G- Justin Simon

F- Marvin Clark II

F- Bashir Ahmed

G- Bryan Trimble, Jr.

F- Tariq Owens

F- Kassoum Yakwe

F- Amar Alibegovic

Looking over to the opponent in Central Connecticut Blue Devils, a team who only won a total of six games last season and finished with a 6-23 record. The Johnnies cannot sit back. They still have a ton of work to do. The first two games for this squad, the Blue Devils of Central Connecticut lost by a combined five points. Granted, they did not play teams with Big East caliber, but if this is the game that the Johnnies drop, it could very well be this one if they lay back.

Looking at the scouting report for the Blue Devils, led by head coach Donyell Marshall, this team plays small ball as well. But, they do have a guard that Chris Mullin needs to be on the lookout for, and that is forward Mustafa Jones, 6'7" from Harlem. Making his homecoming tonight, Jones was the teams highest blocker with 30 blocks per game, and shot a shocking 46.5 field goal percentage last season. I sense Kassoum Yakwe and Tariq Owens will match up with him quite well this evening.

Potential Starting 5 for Central Connecticut Blue Devils:

G- Tyson Batiste

G- Austin Nehls

G- Eric Bowles

F- Mustafa Jones

C- Deione Bute

The game will be televised on FS2, and can be heard tonight on WSJU St. John's University Radio Network with Nick Diamantis on the call.

Joseph Jarzynka