Basketball Hall of Famer Chris Mullin’s first year as head coach of the St. John’s Red Storm is starting on a frustrating note. Not only did the team get stomped by Division II St. Thomas Aquinas in an exhibition game, but the NCAA is taking its sweet time in making a decision on the eligibility of four-star freshman guard Marcus LoVett.
Speaking to reporters after Saturday’s exhibition win over Sonoma State, Mullin expressed his feelings on the matter.
“It’s absurd and I’m 100 percent frustrated,” Mullin said. “I’m thinking about flying to Indianapolis myself. I have some friends there with the Pacers, I may fly to Indianapolis myself to investigate.”
When asked if having LoVett would help alleviate the pressure put on the Red Storm’s other freshman point guard, Federico Mussini, Mullin also took more time to back LoVett’s case.
“Of course,” Mullin said of LoVett. “And he deserves to play. The kid has done everything.”
Though LoVett is currently out with a leg injury, it’s not at all surprising that his eligibility is an issue. He spent his first three years of high school at multiple schools in his home state of California, and finally settled at Chicago’s Morgan Park High. Any time a player is at multiple schools, it raises something of a red flag.
But Mullin should take a step back and realize that, though tempting, going to the NCAA offices in Indianapolis isn’t a good idea. If anything, it may hurt LoVett’s cause. Just the same, the Red Storm really need a capable ball-handler and scorer at the point this season, and Mussini has not looked sharp in exhibition games thus far.
Campus Sports will update LoVett’s case as new information becomes available.
St. John’s opens the regular season at Carnesecca Arena on Friday against the Northeast Conference’s Wagner Seahawks. Tip-off is slated for 6 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports