I might be dating myself a bit here but have you seen the movie Groundhog Day? You know, the one with Bill Murray where every day he wakes up and it’s the same day he had just experienced the day before.
Well whether or not you’ve seen it, Mondays this Winter have been like that movie for St. John’s freshman JaKarr Sampson, who’s received the same honor almost as often as not this season.
For the seventh time this season (in 16 weeks), the 6-foot-8 Ohio native was named Big East Rookie of the Week, putting him in a class with Big East legends Carmelo Anthony (10), Allen Iverson (9) and Troy Murphy (8) for having won the award the most times in the conference’s history.
In a week in which the Johnnies had to suspend their leading scorer, D’Angelo Harrison, for the rest of the season, the freshman scored 22 points with six rebounds and two blocks in the Red Storm’s only game of the week, a 62-59 loss at the hands of Providence. Sampson leads all Big East freshmen in scoring (15.0 ppg) and rebounding (6.6), but has really matured over the course of his first season of collegiate ball, even leading his team in scoring in each of their last three contests.
As poorly as this season seems to be ending for St. John’s, who find themselves down but not out in the Big East with a conference record of 8-8, Sampson has been a tremendous bright spot for the up-and-coming basketball program.
He’s already a lock for the Big East Rookie of the Year award, and as for the team he’s taking over as the leader for, I wouldn’t count them out as long as their big freshman is doing his thing.
For hoops, hip-hop and other random sports and pop culture commentary, follow Jared Mintz on Twitter @JaredMintzTruth