Big East Breakouts: St. John’s God’sgift Achiuwa
The St. John’s Red Storm had an incredibly young class last year with seven freshman. Everyone will be back besides Moe Harkless and everyone will likely improve with a year under their belts. However, the team will need some serious breakouts in they want to contend in the Big East. No one’s development is more important than a player who’s not a freshman, but has only played one season, God’sgift Achiuwa.
A player with the name of God’sgift certainly has some expectations to live up to. But Achiuwa has the talent to be a big time player for the Red Storm. He was fantastic in nonconference last year, averaging 12.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per game, but struggled in Big East play by averaging 7.9 points and 5 rebounds. Achiuwa will need to toughen up if he wants to play in the rugged Big East.
Despite being only 6’8″, Achiuwa is first and foremost a big man. He works hard on the glass and is able to score down low. He has nice hops and is a solid shot blocker. However, if Achiuwa truly wants to break out, he needs to become more versatile. He can’t do much ten feet or more away from the basket. He needs to work on his jump shot as well as his ball handling. And if he can’t get too much better at that, he’s just going to have to become a beast down low.
The team has a star player in D’Angelo Harrison that everyone can play off of, but Achiuwa needs to step up and patrol the paint. If he’s able to do this and the rest of the Red Storm makes the necessary improvements, we could see the St. John’s youngsters lighting up the Big East.