Ever since St. John's named Norm Roberts their coach, there has been a renewed effort to land local recruits. After a 6-21 record last season, they fired Mike Jarvis, their coach since the 98-99 season who seldom recruited within New York City. Several local high school coaches are happy that St. John's is looking locally again.
Coach Oliver Antigua of St. Raymond's in the Bronx said, "We want to be able to help them get back to where they were. St. John's is our school, New York City's school. That wasn't the case before Norm got there." Christ the King's coach, Bob Oliva, who coached former Johnnie Omar Cook said, "At this point, I've spoken with Norm more than I ever did when Mike [Jarvis] was here. "And I spoke with Mike more than anyone else because of Omar."
Gothamist wonders how a school that once had national name recognition neglected its roots and finished last season with only 8 players, 4 of which were walk-ons. It's good to see that Coach Roberts has moved in the right direction, by attempting to get the local talent for St. John's. New York is sometimes considered a basketball Mecca, it's a shame when the city's most storied team can't recruit at home.