As has been discussed ad nauseam, the month of September is a pivotal one for the future of the Saint Joseph's program. With one 2014 commitment in the fold, in Bronx point guard Shavar Newkirk, the Hawk coaches have 3 or 4 more scholarships to use in the class.
St. Joe's loses Langston Galloway, Ron Roberts, Halil Kanacevic, and Daryus Quarles to graduation after the coming season. Those four combined for just under 36 points per game a season ago, as well as over 20 rebounds. The coaching staff is in need of a 2014 recruiting class that can avoid a major drop-off when those core four graduate.
In addition to Shavar Newkirk, a tough, quick, creative point guard, the Hawks do add West Virginia transfer Aaron Brown to the roster in 2014-2015. Brown, a Penn Wood (PA) graduate, will have two years of eligibility remaining.
Rumors circulated yesterday that 2014 Fairfield Prep (CT) center Paschal Chukwu is currently on campus at Saint Joseph's. Chukwu has been considering Providence, UConn, Saint John's, NC State, and others, in addition to the Hawks. The 7'1 center is a defensive game-changer at any level, and would instantly be one of the top big men in the Atlantic 10 should he end up there.
Three confirmed visits are scheduled for September. 6'4 shooting guard James Demery and 6'7 power forward Markell Lodge will be on Hawk Hill the weekend of September 5th. It could be argued that both Demery and Lodge are among the top two targets at the positions in the 2014 recruiting class.
Demery told Hawk Hill Hardwood that he is down to St. Joe's, Creighton, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, and Miami a few weeks back, with his only visit scheduled for SJU. Last week, Lodge told me that his only scheduled visit is St. Joe's, but that he would also like to get to see Oklahoma State as well.
The following weekend, 6'5 shooting guard Peyton Allen has an official visit set for Hawk Hill. Allen, who ran with the Southwest Illinois Jets this summer, collected an offer from the Hawks in July. Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Indiana State, Iowa, Bradley, and Saint Louis are among the schools involved, according to his AAU coach, Dana Morgan.
Last week, 2014 Fayetteville (NC) forward Zane Waterman informed me that he was down to St. Joe's, Charlotte, and Manhattan, and planned to sign by the end of September. Reports out this week have that as no longer the case, with Waterman opening everything completely back up and waiting until the spring to sign.
Markell Lodge, James Demery, Peyton Allen, and Paschal Chukwu are four of Saint Joseph's top targets, and it appears that all four could be making their decisions in the coming month or so. While it's been slow as of late on Hawk Hill, that could be changing in the near future.
Monday morning round-up
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