Top 20 Recruit Jermaine Lawrence Commits to Cincinnati over Local St. John’s

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

A couple of weeks ago we reported that Queens, New York recruit Jermaine Lawrence had narrowed his choices down to Cincinnati, St. John’s, and UNLV. Today we’re reporting that he’s made his decision.

The 6-foot-9 Lawrence went to Tumblr to tell the world that he’d be joining Mick Cronin in Cincinnati this coming summer, becoming the team’s fifth commit for the class of 2013, and their first top-50 player (number 19 according to ESPN.com), not to mention their only five-star recruit.

The Pope John XIII High School (NJ) big man has missed the overwhelming majority of his senior season as he was recovering from a hand injury (and surgery) up until last week, and strangely enough, didn’t take any major visits to make his college decision.

“The coaching staff is real cool. They’ve been keeping in touch with me since my sophomore year,” the former Benjamin N. Cardozo (Queens) star told Zagsblog in early January, speaking on his future team. “I like the way they use their forwards and they’re a tough team. There’s nothing better than playing with a tough team.”

Lawrence is the first highly touted big man to commit to Cincinnati under Cronin’s watch other than Yancy Gates, and should immediately be inserted into the Bearcats frontcourt. A four with more of a three’s game, Lawrence will have to earn playing time over the likes of Justin Jackon and Titus Rubles, who will both be seniors next season, but if he can bulk up his 190-pound frame and become more of a banger, he will unquestionably be one of the more unstoppable bigs in the nation.

For hoops, hip-hop and other random sports and pop culture commentary, follow Jared Mintz on Twitter @JaredMintzTruth

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